The Phoenix Suns traded for former Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic Wednesday. The Suns gave up their former starting center, Deandre Ayton, who was sent to Portland.

After the trade was reported, Nurkic posted messages on X that read goodbye to the Trail Blazers, who he played for in his last seven NBA seasons, and hello to the Suns. Nurkic's message featured a Suns fans who said, “Suns in four,” at a playoff game in 2021.

Nurkic is 29 years old. This past season with the Trail Blazers, he averaged 13.3 points on 51.9 percent shooting and 9.1 rebounds per game. He played and started in 52 games for the Trail Blazers.

Ayton is 25 years old and a better player than Nurkic — he averaged 18.0 points on 58.9 percent shooting and 10.0 rebounds in 67 games started in 2022-23 — but his situation with the Suns may have been irreparable. Ayton's energy has been criticized by the fanbase for the last two years, and he seemed frustrated in the team's media day this past season after he signed a max contract.

Ayton had a poor relationship with previous Suns coach Monty Williams. Even though the Suns have a new coach, Frank Vogel, who praised Ayton in his first two press conferences with the team, they decided to move on from Ayton as they seek a championship with superstars Kevin Durant and Devin Booker and three-time All-Star Bradley Beal.

ClutchPoints provided a grade for the Ayton-Nurkic trade. Nurkic has not been the same player since he suffered a broken leg in the 2019-20 season, but he is still a serviceable center.

Vogel has said his defensive scheme revolves around centers. He has guided Roy Hibbert and Anthony Davis to all-defensive honors in the past.