Late Wednesday night, the Phoenix Suns made one of the most noteworthy trades in franchise history. The team shipped a massive trade package of Mikal Bridges, Cameron Johnson, Jae Crowder, and four first-round picks to the Brooklyn Nets in exchange for superstar forward Kevin Durant. A Suns squad that has hovered around the .500 mark all season long suddenly has a very legitimate shot at winning the title in June. Stephen A Smith echoed this sentiment in a recent episode of ESPN's First Take, per a tweet from ClutchPoints:

“All you've got to do is be you as a basketball player…This is the best chance that the Phoenix Suns have of winning the NBA championship in my lifetime.”

Kevin Durant, 34, has played for three different teams — the Thunder, Warriors, and Nets — across his 15 years in the league. He's averaging 29.7 points, 6.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 0.8 steals, 1.5 blocks, and 3.5 turnovers across 39 appearances this season (all starts).

Durant is shooting the ball incredibly efficiently from the field thus far in 2022-23, even by his standards — his current 55.9% field-goal percentage is the highest of his pro career by a wide margin, and the same goes for his 62.2% two-point field-goal percentage.

The Western Conference playoff race has heated up in a major way over the past few days now that Kyrie Irving and Durant have both been dealt to teams in the West. And Phoenix's core of Durant, Devin Booker, Deandre Ayton, and Chris Paul stacks up well against any other in the conference in terms of pure talent.