3 Reasons the Phoenix Suns' Season Is Fading Away

Roberto PayneContributor IJanuary 18, 2013

3 Reasons the Phoenix Suns' Season Is Fading Away

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    This season has not been kind to the Phoenix Suns.

    Everyone knew it would be a transition year after Steve Nash was traded away, but I'm not sure it was believed the season would go this badly.

    Phoenix is currently 13-28 and in last place in the Western Conference with the fourth-worst record in the league.

    This is uncharted territory for a usually successful franchise and I don't see an end to the misery any time soon.

    It may not yet be the All-Star break, but rest assured; it's time that Suns fans look to the draft.

     

    All statistics used in this article are accurate as of January 18, 2013

Embarrassing Road Record

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    The Phoenix Suns have a 3-17 road record this season, bad enough for second worst in the NBA.

    To top it off, nine of those 17 losses have been by 10 or more points.

    It's not like Phoenix was close in a bunch of those road games and lost at the buzzer. The Suns are being blown out on a regular basis.

    The poor road record is reflective of the lack of talent on the roster and that won't change this season.

    At best, the team will win a little less than half of the 21 remaining road games.

    That's not amazing, but at this point anything is better than the current level of road play.

Terrible Defensive Numbers

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    It's been many years since Phoenix was known as a defensive team, and this year's Suns squad is no different. 

    Most people look at points allowed per game as a strong indicator of a top defense. In reality, that's not the case. 

    The 2012-13 Suns are giving up 99.7 points per game, which isn't good at all, but that's far from the real problem with the defense.

    The real issue stems from opponent field-goal percentage and opponent three-point percentage. 

    Phoenix is allowing opponents to shoot 46.7 percent from the field and 38.9 percent from three-point territory. That's bad enough for 29th in the league in both categories. 

    By comparison, the 2011-12 Suns were 21st in opponent field-goal percentage and 18th in opponent three-point percentage. 

    There's no way the Phoenix Suns will win many games with a defense this bad. 

The Schedule Doesn't Get Any Easier

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    So far this season, the schedule has not been kind to Phoenix.

    Just when it seems a Sacramento or a New Orleans is up next on the schedule, an Oklahoma City or San Antonio pops up right after.

    This is what happens to all Western Conference teams because of the incredible depth throughout the conference.

    For the Suns, this is horrible. The team doesn't have enough talent to win on a consistent level against superior competition.

    Looking at the upcoming schedule, Phoenix plays teams like the Los Angeles Clippers, San Antonio Spurs, Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks all before the end of January.

    Expect the next month of the season to hold a ton of losing as a result of that tough schedule.