I played basketball all through Junior High and High School, and even was recruited to play in college, though I ended up not taking that route. I’ve been a Phoenix Suns fan since the Charles Barkley era, even though I was raised in Iowa, or maybe because I was raised in Iowa. Everyone else was a Chicago Bulls fan, and I had to be different.
Then, when the Suns ended up with Jeff Hornacek (an Iowa boy) it sealed the deal! I’ve always felt like the Suns never got their due, and in 2019 when they brought in Monty Williams as head coach and went 8-0 in 2020 in “the bubble,” things began looking up!
If you’re a Phoenix Suns fan like me, you’ve experienced a very disappointing end to the last two seasons.
After coming very close a few times in their history, it looked like 2021 was the year Phoenix would at last win the NBA title. However, the Suns lost in six games to the Milwaukee Bucks, and while the loss was heartbreaking, I’d never seen a team play with such heart, and be so in synch with each other. It was a lot of fun to watch as a fan!
This year the regular season was even better, and we witnessed the Suns shatter a multitude of records, both in the league and the franchise, and finish with the best record in the NBA, winning 64 of their 82 games.
Going into the opening round of the 2022 NBA Playoffs the Suns were the favorite to win in all.
And then the wheels came off the bus.
We know now that the Suns had several players playing through injuries, but they had to fight to make it out the first round against heavy underdog, the New Orleans Pelicans.
In the next round, Phoenix faced the Dallas Mavericks, another team they were expected to defeat handily. And, after the first two games of the series it looked as though the Suns were well on their way to a series win.
Then, the team went to Dallas and suffered a pair of losses. The series was tied 2-2. The teams would trade wins the next two games, setting up a winner-take-all Game 7. The odds appeared to be in Phoenix’s favor, having the home court advantage.
Let’s just say, things didn’t work out that way.
In that Game 7, the Suns were not only beaten by the Mavericks; they were embarrassed.
It looked as if everyone in the Suns organization failed that night. Not one of the Phoenix players appeared to have any desire to be out on the court. The head coach (who was the 2021-22 NBA Coach of the Year) was mostly silent and failed to make critical adjustments, except for getting into a verbal tiff with one of the players on the bench. The Suns lost by one of the largest Game 7 deficits in playoff history.
When it was critical, the team phoned it in and went MIA. I see this happen many times with financial advisors as well. It is easy to “show up” when we are winning – like when the markets are going up. But, when the markets drop or face uncertainty, many financial advisors hide. They don’t reach out and even worse, they don’t return calls or emails from clients. That inaction leaves their clients feeling like how the Suns fans, including myself, felt after the loss to the Mavericks. Abandoned. Disappointed. Worried.
The Suns organization put out a statement after the season concluded to those of us that held ticket packages this year. Part of that statement is how I feel about what we do as advisors. It’s also how our clients should feel working with us.
“We're in this together. We win together. We lose together. We fight together. And the only way we get better, is together.”
We’ll see what changes the Suns make in the offseason. Most certainly, there will be trades, free agency signings, and course-corrections. If your financial advisor isn’t available, or you are worried about your investments, reach out. We’d love to have a conversation.