The Phoenix Suns are gearing up for the playoffs for the first time since 2010. Chris Paul and Devin Booker both should get a big thank you from suns fans. Those two are set to have good playoff performances. But two X-factors for this suns team to make a deep run in the NBA playoffs are Deandre Ayton and Mikal Bridges.
Deandre Ayton is having a good 2020-21 season. This comes with no surprise because he has steadily improved every year of his career. He is averaging 14.4 points per game and 10.3 rebounds per game. Though his averages are down this season, his consistency on both sides of the ball has gone up. That may lead people to ask why is he an x-factor for the suns in the playoffs?
The answer to that question is Ayton’s aggressiveness. Ayton’s aggressiveness has been up and down all year, which is why he will be an x-factor. NBA fans have watched moments where Ayton seems like he’s the best center on the court, then it’s times where he looks uninterested on the court. In the playoffs, Ayton might have to face off against Anthony Davis, Nikola Jokic, Jonas Valanciunas, and Rudy Gobert. Deandre Ayton will have to aggressive on offense and defense. When he is aggressive, he makes the suns one of the hardest teams to beat in the NBA.
Mikal Bridges is having a career year. His points, rebounds, and shooting percentages have all took a jump this year. Bridges become one of the best 3-and-D players in the NBA. He has also become a top-tier role player in the NBA. Those two reasons are why he will be an x-factor for the Suns. I believe Bridges is a championship level role player. He can take a team from having a conference finals ceiling to having an NBA finals ceiling. Bridges is normally given the task to guard the other team’s best perimeter player each game. He is a sure thing when shooting the ball. He has a 66-percent true shooting percentage. Bridges doesn’t have to do much. Just make his shots and play excellent defense. In my mind, he can do that because he has been doing that consistently this year.
Deandre Ayton and Mikal Bridges’ contribution will be X-factors for the Phoenix Suns these playoffs. When Deandre Ayton is playing to his full potential and Mikal bridges is a threat on both ends of the floor, the Phoenix Suns are hard to beat in a 7 game series. If these two players perform how I think they can, then the Phoenix suns could be playing in the NBA in the finals for the first time since 1993.