The Suns' constituency of fans went through the wringer on the way down from the franchise's winningest era.

The leadership's approval rating plummeted right along with the team's winning percentage after missteps that came with a stiff-arm to history.

It prompted the restructuring of the front office last year after the franchise's second-worst season. The ship was righted so smoothly, making an instant impact and offering promise for the future, that this offseason could have "leadership you can trust" campaign signs pitched around US Airways Center.

From ownership to fans, confidence flipped for the front office since General Manager Ryan McDonough and Assistant General Manager Pat Connelly joined the incumbents — President of Basketball Operations Lon Babby, Director of Player Personnel John Treloar and Assistant General Manager Trevor Bukstein.

That competence is paramount now in a summer that could shape the Suns' future as much as the last one, when the Suns swung deals for starters Eric Bledsoe, Gerald Green and Miles Plumlee while maintaining the possibility of $20 million in cap space for this summer. They also hired Jeff Hornacek, who went on to finish as NBA Coach of the Year runner-up thanks to a 23-win improvement. They cut ties early with mistake acquisitions Michael Beasley and Kendall Marshall and drafted Alex Len and Archie Goodwin.

No front office can remain undefeated, but 2013's direction inspires belief for a team facing so many imminent decisions. The Suns own three first-round picks in Thursday's draft and then head into more major choices next week with the opening of free agency. There are the restricted-free-agency statuses to address with Bledsoe and P.J. Tucker, the Kevin Love trade chase, potential free-agent splashes like Pau Gasol or Luol Deng, whether to pick up Ish Smith's team option and whether to do something long term for Channing Frye in light of his player option.

The Suns are walking a delicate balance. They value the chemistry of a team that was on the playoff brink last season despite Bledsoe missing 39 games but that needs to improve to be a contender this season and down the line.

The Suns accumulated six first-round picks over the next two drafts to be in position of acquiring a star player. Minnesota is said to be more interested in acquiring established young talent for Love, rather than a glut of picks to rebuild. The Suns do not want to part with All-NBA third-team guard Goran Dragic or Bledsoe, a restricted free agent who might not want to be in Minnesota anyway. The Timberwolves could feel likewise on either point guard with Ricky Rubio already there but another option, like Markieff Morris, is not enough to be the key acquisition.