Suns Retorter: Can't Avoid BS on Suns Bandwagon

In today’s social media age, visceral reactions can be sent immediately and directly to the focus of one’s ire. In the past, one would have to take time to write a letter, either on the computer or hand written, and actually consider what they were going to say before sending. Now, it is almost as if opinions are a stream of consciousness with very little filter.

In the instant reaction society though, the opposite is the case as well. Opinions swing in an almost bipolar manner where one minute things are great and the next they’re the worst imaginable. Thus is the unfiltered human psyche when strong emotions are involved.

In sports that means one thing, your team’s bandwagon better have some good shocks because people will be getting on and off of it faster than Usain Bolt. That, and the fans and bloggers better have the ice ready for all the sprained ankles they get from jumping on and off.

Thus is the case for the Phoenix Suns this season.

Prior to the season the public opinion was less than stellar. Some would call them the least watchable team in the NBA, still others would yell “tank” in their direction like they were trying to invade something and some were nothing more than pessimistic.

It’s bound to happen when your team is coming off the worst season, outside of the very first year in 1968, in franchise history.

They’ve overachieved beyond anybody’s craziest expectations… They’re very well coached. Hornacek has been fantastic. You watch this team play and think ‘now that’s a well run team.’

— Grantland's Bill Simmons

But a funny thing happened on the way to the 2013-14 season…

Hope.

Ryan McDonough came to Phoenix from Beantown to be the general manager and brought along with him a defined plan and vision. A Sun returned home in Jeff Hornacek as head coach with a path to the promise that involves hard work and dedication. And thus, a foundation had been set.

Yet, it wasn’t enough.

Picked by many pundits to win no more than 19 games, expectations were set so low that it would take a ladder and straining one’s neck to see .500. The changes obviously weren’t enough to convert the detractors. Then came the month of November and a 9-8 record.

It helped change the tone…of some.

The place that once called them the least watchable team in the NBA now has them ranked 13th in the Association. The man who held up the “tank” banner with pride, one Bill Simmons, offered an mini mea culpa on his podcast recently saying:

“They’ve overachieved beyond anybody’s craziest expectations… They’re very well coached. Hornacek has been fantastic. You watch this team play and think ‘now that’s a well run team.’ ”

Still, not everyone believes in the vision or the direction. Some take a shortsighted approach to things and forget what it’s like to be a fan.

It’s alright, though; this team seems to enjoy the idea of proving the haters wrong. In fact, they’ve made it a point of motivation so far. They believe in their coach, the plan and the future. If it takes some people longer to catch up to that than others, it’s no big deal. There’s room on the bandwagon and don’t worry, no one is taking attendance. At least not yet.