Phoenix Suns young star Devin Booker has been the talk of the town since the restart. The 23-year-old has been simply outstanding of late, and thanks to his heroics, the Suns have emerged as one of the dark horses to potentially steal a spot in the upcoming postseason.
Despite his tremendous play for the Suns, however, there has been whispers about a potential move away from Phoenix for Booker. Recently, Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green made it abundantly clear that he believes it would be in Booker’s best interest if he takes his talents elsewhere. The outspoken Dubs star is not the only one who has had the same thoughts about Booker and how his career will pretty much nowhere if if he stays in Phoenix.
For their part, we’re pretty sure that the Suns front office will do everything in their power to keep their superstar on board. They intend to build the franchise’s future around him, and trading him away will be the last thing on their minds. However, we’ve seen crazier things happened.
If Booker somehow finds himself on the trading block — be it of his own desire or otherwise — there will be more than a few teams that will be vying for his signature. Below we have five potential trade packages that might just pique the interest of the Suns should this day ever come.
Trade deal: Devin Booker for Jarrett Culver, Josh Okogie, 2020 first-round pick
If Booker was given a choice to pick which team he’d want to play in other than the Suns, then he would probably choose the Minnesota Timberwolves. The primary motivation for him would be the opportunity to play with his two best buddies in Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell. What a threesome that would make.
For the Wolves, they will potentially have the advantage of Booker wanting to make the move to Minnesota. As such, sending over promising young guys such as Jarrett Culver and Josh Okogie might just do the trick. They must, however, also include their 2020 first-rounder, which is projected to be a Top 5 pick. This should give the Suns the opportunity to draft a new (future) cornerstone they can build around.
New York Knicks
Trade deal: Devin Booker for Julius Randle, Elfrid Payton, 2020 first-round pick
Another potential landing spot for Booker would be the New York Knicks. The Knicks are desperate for a superstar, and Booker absolutely fits the bill. For Booker, a move to The Big Apple provides him with an opportunity to be the face of one of the most renowned franchises in all of sports.
Julius Randle has been New York’s best player this season, and they will almost certainly need to center a deal around him. Elfrid Payton, despite his quirks, would be a good addition for Phoenix, as the 26-year-old can serve as a backup to Ricky Rubio (or maybe even take over the starting spot).
The kicker here would be New York’s 2020 first-rounder, which is projected to be fifth or sixth in the upcoming draft.
Trade deal: Devin Booker for John Collins, De’Andre Hunter, Kevin Huerter, 2020 first-round pick
The Atlanta Hawks have a ton of assets they can offer to Phoenix in exchange for Booker. A deal could be structured around the highly promising John Collins, who would make a tremendous frontcourt pairing with Deandre Ayton.
Young studs such as De’Andre Hunter, Kevin Huerter, and Atlanta’s 2020 first-rounder (also projected to be a Top 5 pick), makes this quite a haul for the Suns.
For the Hawks, bringing Booker on board would instantly form one of the most potent backcourt pairings in the entire league with him playing alongside Trae Young.
Trade deal: Devin Booker for Ben Simmons
The recent injury to Ben Simmons pretty much means that the Philadelphia 76ers’ season is over. They will still make it to the playoffs, but merely getting out of the first round is going to be a huge task for them. At this point, it seems that The Process needs to come to an end.
Sixers general manager Elton Brand might be pushed to trade one of his two superstars, and in the case of a potential Booker deal, it has to be Ben Simmons getting the boot. A Booker-Joel Embiid one-two punch should propel the Sixers as contenders for next season.
For Phoenix, they get to replace their superstar with another one, who is equally as exciting as Booker. In the end, this might be a win-win for two teams looking for a fresh start.
Los Angeles Lakers
Trade deal: Devin Booker for Kyle Kuzma and an assortment of players and/or future draft picks
The Lakers don’t have much assets at their disposal so any deal will need to be centered on their third-best player in Kyle Kuzma. The 25-year-old has been overshadowed by the arrival of Anthony Davis in the summer, but he has shown that he can be a star in his own right. A move to Phoenix might just be what Kuzma needs at this point in his career.
LA should let the Suns take their pick on any player on their roster not named LeBron James or Anthony Davis. Their draft picks — both present and future — will likewise need to be on the table.
Simply put, the Lakers will pretty much need to throw in anything they can to bring Booker to Hollywood. The reward? A new-wave Big 3 of LeBron, Davis, and Booker. How does that sound, Laker fans?