Phoenix Suns star Devin Booker was not happy with the organization once they collectively decided not to pursue his longtime friend D'Angelo Russell as a free agent in 2019. The two have been thick as thieves along with fellow 2015 draftee Karl-Anthony Towns.
The Suns reportedly didn't want to pursue Booker's good friend because they “apparently felt Russell wouldn’t have been a good influence on Booker off the court,” according to The Arizona Republic. Booker, according to SNY's Ian Begley, wasn’t happy with the organization at the time of the report.
The Suns chose to pursue Teryr Rozier and wound up signing Ricky Rubio once the Charlotte Hornets were able to pull in Rozier in a sign-and-trade with the Boston Celtics.
Phoenix showed a commitment to Booker in the way of a five-year, $158 million max extension of his rookie contract, but that doesn't mean Booker and the organization are in the same wavelength.
Trevor Trout and Kameron Hay of Elite Media Group recently discussed how Booker’s father, former NBA player Melvin Booker, is tired of watching his son be in a loser's situation. The context is too good to let it go to waste:
“Melvin Booker (Devin Booker’s father) is tired of watching his son go for a meaningless 26 a night just to get smoked habitually on Fox Sports Arizona. The Phoenix Suns pay the staff chicken feed, and the owner is clueless. Efforts to get Booker to the Knicks are very real. And it can happen because Leon Rose is that guy.”
The Suns have made a significant improvement under new coach Monty Williams, which has brought the team as the last to be invited to the Orlando bubble, standing a full six games behind the eighth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies out West.
Yet Booker will need to see much more than that to consider staying in Phoenix, especially when requests like going after D'Angelo Russell are so blatantly ignored by a brass that hasn't made a single splash since drafting Booker five years ago.