Since the team's inception in 1968, the Phoenix Suns have been one of the most successful franchises in NBA history. Though the team has never won a championship, the Suns have made nine Western Conference Finals, two NBA Finals appearances and are fourth-best all-time in franchise winning percentage.
The Suns have also had multiple All-Stars and Hall of Famers play in the desert, and these are the 12 players who truly represent the incredible talent that has graced each era of Suns basketball.
This is what a Phoenix Suns dream team would look like, if age were not a factor and each player was in the prime of his career. There team consists of a starting five, three reserve guards, three reserve forwards and a reserve center.
Here is the all-time greatest Phoenix Suns dream team.
Career Averages: 14.4 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 8.5 APG
Years on Suns: 1996-1998; 2004-2012
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Six-time NBA All-Star, Two-time MVP winner, Two-time All-NBA Second Team, Three-time All-NBA First Team
Yes, there he is again. He is guaranteed to show up on any list pertaining to all-time Phoenix Suns greats, no matter what the category is.
Nash has done so much for the Suns since signing in 2004.
He's won two MVP awards, had six All-Star appearances and has helped in developing so many different young players. He set up his teammates with endless opportunities to succeed and brought the Suns so close to winning a ring several different times. His pass-first style of play and humble attitude made him adored by teammates, the media and fans all across the league.
Not only is Steve Nash the greatest point guard the Suns have ever had, he is also undoubtedly the greatest player to ever put on a Phoenix uniform.
He is the all-time franchise leader in three-pointers made, three-point percentage, free-throw percentage and assists. He also shot 49 percent from the field for his career and 43 percent from behind the arc, and the fact that he is an amazing shooter but still chooses to share the ball with his teammates makes him all the more admirable.
Nash leaving for the Lakers this past offseason marked the end to a great era of basketball and an enchanting and exciting time to be a Suns fan. No matter what team he plays for, Steve Nash is and will be missed.
Career Averages: 18.9 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 3.8 APG
Years on Suns: 1977-1988
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Six-time NBA All-Star, 1978 NBA Rookie of the Year, All-Rookie First Team, Two-time All-NBA Second Team
Walter Davis spent a spent a full decade in Phoenix, and yet he still may be one of the team's most underrated greats.
During his time with the Suns, Davis averaged at least 20 points per game six times, and he was always known as a player who could score for the team in clutch situations. Overall, he is certainly one of the best pure scorers the Suns have ever had.
The Suns have had other great shooting guards over the years such as Paul Westphal, Dan Majerle, Joe Johnson and Dick Van Arsdale, but none of those players comes close to taking this spot away from Davis.
He is the franchise's all-time leading scorer with over 15,000 points, and he also ranks in the top five in games played, field goals made, free throws made, assists and steals.
Career Averages: 16.2 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 2.0 APG
Years on Suns: 1999-2008
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Four-time All-Star, All-Rookie Second Team, Two-time All-NBA Third Team
Shawn Marion, otherwise known as "The Matrix," or "the guy with the weird-looking shot," was an integral part of Suns basketball for about a decade. He was originally drafted by the team as a first-round pick in 1999, but in just a few years he formed a deadly trio along with Steve Nash and Amar'e Stoudemire.
Nash and Stoudemire made a fantastic pick-and-roll combo, but the Suns would not have been so successful for several years in the mid-2000s without Marion contributing the way he did. Marion was freakishly athletic, and he had the ability to spread the floor and shoot threes or take an alley-oop pass from Nash and finish with a devastating slam.
Marion was one of the most versatile players in the team's history. He could rebound like a center, run the floor like a guard and he could defend the opposing team's elite wing players too.
If this starting lineup took the floor, you would definitely see some nice lob passes from Nash to Marion. Watching Marion was exciting, and without him the "seven seconds or less" offense would not have been nearly as effective in Phoenix.
Career Averages: 22.1 PPG, 11.7 RPG, 3.9 APG
Years on Suns: 1992-1996
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Four-time NBA All-Star, One-time NBA MVP, One-time All-NBA First Team, Two-time All-NBA Second Team, One-time All-NBA Third Team
Charles Barkley was not a member of the Suns for nearly as long as some of these other players, but he will forever be remembered sporting purple and orange nevertheless.
In his first season with the Suns in 1992, Barkley averaged 25.6 points and 12.2 rebounds, leading the team to the NBA Finals and winning the MVP award as well.
Despite only being listed as 6'6", Sir Charles was always known as an athletically gifted player who would dominate on the glass every single night. He grabbed more rebounds than opponents six inches taller than him, and he is second-best player in rebounds per game in franchise history, behind just Paul Silas.
The Barkley years were some of the best in Phoenix Suns history, as his presence instantly made the Suns contenders. He is still a fan favorite in Phoenix, even with his somewhat bizarre personality and occasional outrageous outbursts or remarks.
Career Averages: 21.3 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 1.3 APG
Years on Suns: 2002-2010
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Five-time All-Star, 2003 Rookie of the Year, All-Rookie First Team, Three-time All-NBA Second Team, One-time All-NBA First Team
Amar'e Stoudemire is not a natural center, but the Suns have not had any elite centers in franchise history, and so this dream team will go with a slightly smaller, quicker starting five.
Stoudemire spent many seasons in Phoenix, and although he suffered through a couple of major injuries along the way, the duo of Nash and Stoudemire truly represent what the 2000s were all about for Suns fans.
For many years Stoudemire was considered an elite power forward, and he appeared in several All-Star games along with other greats at his position such as Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett and Dirk Nowitzki.
He could always nail a long jump shot in a defender's face, but what made him famous was the fact that he was part of the second-greatest pick-and-roll combo in NBA history, behind just John Stockton and Karl Malone.
Stoudemire was a master at setting screens, and Nash was a master at finding the open man with a beautiful pass. Together, the two were a perfect match, and Stoudemire's freakish athletic ability allowed him to finish several of those famous pick-and-roll plays with monster jams. Stoudemire has turned a lot of opponents into his victims, and the list of players he has posterized is too many to count.
The Suns always had some bad luck in the playoffs, and Nash and Stoudemire never won a ring together. Even so, STAT should be considered one of the five greatest players in Suns history.
Career Averages: 17.9 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 9.1 APG
Years on Suns: 1987-2000
Achievements as a Sun: Three-time All-Star, Four-time All-NBA Second Team, One-time All-NBA Third Team
Kevin Johnson was second fiddle to Charles Barkley on the 1993 Suns team that faced Michael Jordan in the finals, and Johnson can no longer be considered the best Suns point guard ever because of Nash, but none of that makes his time spent in Phoenix any less admirable.
Johnson's career got off to a slow start on the Cleveland Cavaliers, but halfway into his first NBA season he was traded to the Suns and spent the rest of his career there. Johnson won the most improved player award in 1989, and he flourished as a Sun, making a few All-Star appearances and leading the team to the playoffs several times.
Johnson was always very athletic, but perhaps his best moment as a Sun was dunking over Hakeem Olajuwon in the 1994 playoffs. Even after the Suns were eliminated, that dunk remains a classic moment in the minds of all Suns fans.
Career Averages: 15.6 PPG, 1.9 RPG, 4.4 APG
Years on Suns: 1975-1980; 1983-1984
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Four-time All-Star, One-time All-NBA Second Team, Three-time All-NBA First Team
After Charlie Scott was traded, the Suns acquired Paul Westphal, who turned out to be one of the greatest Suns of all time. Westphal played in Phoenix for several seasons during the prime of his career, and his list of achievements as a Sun is impressive to say the least.
Westphal was selected to the All-Star Game in four consecutive seasons in Phoenix, and he was also selected to the All-NBA first team in 1977,1979 and 1980. Westphal was also a key part of the Suns team that reached its first finals appearance in 1976 despite eventually losing the series 4-2 to the Celtics.
Through his six career seasons with the Suns, Westphal averaged 20.6 points per game and is the team's eighth all-time leading scorer. He also came back and was the head coach of the Suns from 1992-1996, leading a team that included Kevin Johnson, Dan Majerle and Charles Barkley to to the 1993 NBA Finals.
Westphal left a legacy in Phoenix, both as a player and a coach. His number has been retired by the team and his name is one that will always come up when listing the franchise's all-time greats.
Career Averages: 16.4 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 3.3 APG
Years on Suns: 1968-1977
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Three-time All-Star, One-time All-Defensive Second Team
6'5" Guard Dick Van Arsdale is known as the "Original Sun" for a reason. Van Arsdale may not have been a superstar, but he was a huge contributor to the Suns in the '70s.
After playing three seasons for the Knicks, Van Arsdale had a breakout year with Phoenix in the team's inaugural season, averaging 21 points and 6.9 rebounds. Though the team's first couple seasons were unsuccessful, All-Stars Gail Goodrich and Van Arsdale at least made the team interesting.
In total he spent nine seasons with Phoenix and had the best years of his career in the desert. He made three consecutive All-Star appearances from 1969-1971.
Van Arsdale wasn't a Hall of Fame-caliber player, but he was a fan favorite and committed to the team for the majority of his career. He is fifth all-time for the franchise in scoring and third in minutes played, and he even became a coach for Phoenix for part of the 1986-1987 season. There is no question that he is one of the team's all-time greats.
Career Averages: 18.1 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 2.1 APG
Years on Suns: 1988-1993
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Three-time All-Star, Two-time All-NBA Second Team
Tom Chambers is not a Hall of Fame player, but that doesn't mean he was anything short of a legend in the time he spent with Phoenix.
Chambers played five seasons in the desert after signing a lucrative contract, and for those first two years his main objective was to shoot. Chambers averaged 25.7 points a game in his first season and a career-high 27.2 points a game in his second year with Phoenix.
After that, former teammate Xavier McDaniel joined the team in 1990 and Chambers took fewer shots and focused more on fitting in with his teammates. His scoring numbers and role with the team gradually declined until eventually, in his fifth year with the Suns, he accepted a sixth-man role after the arrival of Charles Barkley.
For his first three years in Phoenix, Chambers was selected to the All-Star Game three times and the All-NBA Second Team twice. Along with Kevin Johnson, Jeff Hornacek and Dan Majerle, the Suns made it to the Western Conference finals on a few different occasions.
In short, Chambers was a legendary player for Phoenix, and his expensive contract was worth every penny. He is sixth all-time for the franchise in points per game, eighth in defensive rebounds and 10th in field-goal attempts.
Even now, Chambers still has a place with the team as a community relations representative.
Career Averages: 18.7 PPG, 8.8 RPG, 4.1 APG
Years on Suns: 1969-1973
Notable Achievements as a Sun: Four-time All-Star, One-time All-NBA First Team
"The Hawk" made the transition from the ABA to the NBA in 1969 and spent three seasons with the Suns. Though his stay in the desert was relatively short, all three seasons were All-Star years for the Hall of Famer, and they were also the best NBA seasons of his career.
In his first and also greatest season in the NBA, Hawkins put up 24.6 points and 10.4 rebounds to go along with 4.8 assists. His last game of the season was his greatest, in which he put up a ridiculous 44 points, 20 rebounds, eight assists, five blocks and five steals.
He was a complete monster on both ends of the court and one of the premier players in the league at the time.
Hawkins might have only spent a few years with Phoenix, but he has gone down as one of the team's all-time legends. He's eighth in franchise history in points per game and is ninth in rebounds per game.
Hawkins was also able to take the new franchise and lead it to a winning record for two straight seasons. He made a huge impact on the team and cannot be left off a list like this.
Career Averages: 17.1 PPG, 8.0 RPG, 2.1 APG
Years on Suns: 1981-1988
Notable Achievements as a Sun: One-time All-Star
Larry Nance spent the first several seasons of his career in Phoenix, and he put up solid numbers even if he wasn't a superstar. Nance averaged at least 16 points per game in all of his seasons in Phoenix except for his rookie year, and his best season was in 1987, when he put up 22.5 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.1 blocks. Nance was 6'10" with a large wingspan, and that made him a great defender.
But in addition to defense, Nance was especially known for his dunks.
He was one of the first NBA big men to put down vicious slams, and his dunks have been re-used by many other players since his time. In addition to being one of the better Phoenix Suns players in franchise history, Nance is most famous for participating in the 1984 Slam Dunk Contest, where his one-handed cradle and windmill dunks stole the show.
Nance won that day despite going up against legends like Dominique Wilkins, Julius Erving and Clyde Drexler, among others. Nance's athletic dunking ability also earned him the nickname "The High-Ayatolla of Slamola".
Career Averages: 14.1 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 4.1 APG
Years on Suns: 1975-1988
Notable Achievements as a Sun: One-time All-Star, 1976 Rookie of the Year, All-Rookie First Team
Look up the franchise leaders for nearly every statistic, and this man's name will come up.
Alvan Adams spent his entire 13-year career in Phoenix, and though he was never a star, he is the best center in franchise history and is also arguably in the top 10 among all players to ever wear a Suns uniform.
In his rookie season, Adams made his only career All-Star appearance and also won the Rookie of the Year award after averaging 19 points, 9.1 rebounds and 1.5 blocks a game.
Along with Paul Westphal, the rookie Adams also helped lead the Suns to the 1976 NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics. For that series, Adams averaged 23 points and 10.2 rebounds a game and also played in a memorable Game 5 which the Celtics won 128-126 in triple overtime.
Adams retired in 1988, and for the franchise he is second all-time in points scored, first in rebounds, first in minutes played, first in blocks, fourth in steals and even third in assists. His number was retired by the team, and Adams is still the best natural center the Suns have ever had.