How is it that a player who logged just 55 total minutes as a rookie can suddenly become a starting center capable of putting up 12.4 points, 11.3 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per 36 minutes?
Plumlee is a fantastic fit with this team, a big reason for his success. As an athletic big man capable of running the floor, he is frequently rewarded by Dragic with alley-oop passes or other feeds that lead to nasty, emphatic dunks.
And other than dunking, Plumlee also has a decent set of post moves and great footwork. His post-up game is still something he has to polish and develop further, but for now he is the best post-up option on the team.
And, of course, he is also clearly the team's defensive anchor. He must have learned so much playing with Roy Hibbert and Ian Mahinmi for one season, as Plumlee can block and alter plenty of shots on defense while still fouling just 3.4 times per 36 minutes. Foul trouble is rarely a problem for him.
Plumlee will be rewarded for his great first half by participating in the Rising Stars Challenge. After having zero players participate in All-Star weekend events last year, having two players fly to New Orleans this season is a testament to the direction and bright future of the organization.
However, Plumlee's future with the Suns is interesting. Although he is having a stellar year, he is also already 25 years old. His ceiling may not be that much higher than the level he is already performing at.
Alex Len, on the other hand, is only 20. He can not match Plumlee's production right now, but perhaps those two will fight for the starting spot in future years.
Or maybe the Suns will look elsewhere for a long-term starting center. Plumlee comes at a low cost, but is he really a serviceable starting center for a contending team?
This is what the coaching staff and front office must decide as the franchise continues its rebuild.