First, it was the Suns having the number 1 overall pick two years ago and was followed up with a bigger splash when the Arizona Cardinals had the top pick in 2019. The verdict is still out on Deandre Ayton but he’s far from a bust. You can say he’s under-performed for the hype that he’s created growing up being a man amongst boys. In 109 games Ayton is averaging 17 points and 10.7 Rebounds per game. The second number 1 pick in Arizona was Kyler Murray, who is playing at an MVP level in his second season in the league so you can say he’s meeting expectations of a top pick.
When Kyler Murray took the field with 35 seconds left down by 4 he wasn’t tripping. He knew he had Deandre Hopkins in the End Zond. The Cardinals pulled off one of the most improbable Hail Mary’s of All-Time to DeAndre Hopkins into triple coverage. The two top offseason acquisitions in an article I published a few weeks ago were Deandre Hopkins number 1 and my runner-up was Stefon Diggs who put the Bills up by 4 with 30+ seconds left. Obviously, for Kyler, that is all the time he needed with no timeouts. As long as he can give Hopkins a chance at a jump ball the Cards had a chance. Kyler is a special player doing special things in his 2nd season.
A day after Kyler Murray lifted every Cardinals fans on Sunday the Suns made the first big move of the NBA offseason. They sent rising star Kelly Oubre Jr., who had a career season, and Ricky Rubio to get CP3. Chris Paul will bring toughness to a very ‘soft’ Deandre Ayton and he will take some pressure off of Devin Booker. Most notably at the end of games. In the past, Arizona sports teams have gone after the aging veterans. However, Chris Paul is different at age 35 then Shaq when he got here or Emmitt Smith when he arrived in the desert. CP3 can still play with anyone on the court. This will be his 16th season in the league and he has the resume of a first ballot hall of famer. Side note he’s been filmed working out with Devin Booker a day after the trade was made. That work ethic will be contagious for Monty Williams and the Phoenix Suns heading into next season.
Two number 1 picks in two years for the Cardinals and Suns gives Arizona sports fans some optimism. The face of Arizona Sports for the last 15 years has been Larry Fitzgerald and most recently Devin Booker but he’s still a baby. There are many bright new faces in Arizona. DeAndre Hopkins and Kyler Murray look like they’re going to be a problem for the NFL for as long as they’re together. The Suns are the winningest franchise in Arizona Sports and haven’t had an offseason pickup to be this excited about since Sir Charles Barkley came to town. They also haven’t tasted the playoffs in a decade and were a game short of making it last season with an 8-0 bubble run that gave Suns fans something to be proud of.