2 hyperbolic trades the Suns need to make right now
The Phoenix Suns are coming off a splendid 2020-21 campaign that saw them, not just break their 10-year postseason, but make the NBA Finals as well. Even though they lost the championship to the Milwaukee Bucks in six hard-fought games, the Suns deserve credit for putting together a successful campaign.
No doubt, Phoenix wants to avenge its Finals defeat and will want to use the bitter taste as motivation to get their way to the top this upcoming 2021-22 season. As constructed, the Suns have the pieces to contend for a championship. Obviously, a lot of Phoenix’s success hinges on their All-Star tandem of Devin Booker and Chris Paul. Deandre Ayton is also coming into his own as their third star. Nonetheless, they could still use some upgrades to further increase their chances of winning a title, especially playing in a loaded Western Conference.
With that said, here are two hyperbolic trades the Phoenix Suns need to make in order to ensure another run to the Finals.
Potential Suns Trades
Trade for Jerami Grant
In the 2020 offseason, Jerami Grant sought greener pastures and signed with the Detroit Pistons for a chance to play a bigger role in an offense. He certainly showed his capability of fulfilling that role this past season as he became Detroit’s top scorer for the 2020-21 season. While the Pistons were a bottom-tier NBA team, this doesn’t discount the fact that, when given the chance, Grant is more than just a 3-and-D wing, which was the reputation he developed with the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Denver Nuggets and was capable of filling up the box score as well.
Nonetheless, it’s possible that Grant may not be in Detroit’s long-term plans with all their young pieces onboard. They could definitely look into the possibility of flipping him as they stockpile more assets for the future. If they make him available, Phoenix should pounce and try their hand at acquiring the talented combo forward.
There is a way for the Suns to take in Grant’s $20 million salary this upcoming season. They would likely need to give up a future first-round pick or two and maybe add a young piece like Jalen Smith to entice the Pistons to a deal. To match salaries, they may need to include Jae Crowder and Dario Saric in the deal.
While this may seem too much to give up for a non-All-Star like Grant, he is still going to be a major upgrade at power forward for the Suns. As he showed in the 2020 playoffs, the 27-year old played a key role defensively for the Nuggets. His length and versatility allowed him to guard the likes of Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, LeBron James, and Anthony Davis. Grant’s presence would allow them to match up against teams with elite big forwards and will give them the chance to play with more versatility on defense.
Trade for Karl-Anthony Towns
Trading for Karl-Anthony Towns would be a huge splash for Phoenix and Suns Nation may even be split on this idea. Still, it’s hard to deny that just a couple of years ago, KAT was seen as one of the best up-and-coming stars in the NBA. Actually, he probably still is.
The Minnesota Timberwolves have barely moved the needle since drafting Towns, save for that one season with Jimmy Butler onboard. If the 25-year old’s frustrations with his squad eventually reach a tipping point, the Suns could consider going for this blockbuster trade.
No doubt, Phoenix would need to start with Deandre Ayton in any deal for Towns. The Suns would probably also need to sacrifice some of their depth to acquire the 2-time All-Star from the Timberwolves.
By replacing Ayton with Towns, the Suns get a legitimate third All-Star alongside Devin Booker and Chris Paul. In addition, doing this deal would unite Towns and Booker, who are very good buddies and were teammates at Kentucky in college.
Despite the multiple losing seasons with the Timberwolves, KAT has undoubtedly established himself as a star player in the NBA and is one of the top centers in the league. His defense may still be suspect right now. However, playing under the tutelage of Monty Williams could help him grow on that side of the floor, the same way Ayton did this past season.