Phoenix Suns reportedly interested in Deron Williams, Steve Nash open to sign-and-trade


The Suns’ media relations staff made it very clear that Lance Blanks was not going to discuss the part of the NBA calendar year that occurs in July on Monday, but that hasn’t stopped rumors from sprouting up across the wide expanse of the Internet concerning the Suns’ offseason plans.

The New York Daily News printed a story last weekend quoting an unnamed source as saying the Suns plan to pursue Deron Williams if Steve Nash leaves, which hardly qualifies as news to me. You mean to say if a team loses its All-Star point guard it might be interested in the best player on the market who happens to play said position of need when the franchise has as much money to spend as anyone? Stop the presses.

The question will be whether D-Will gives the Suns the time of day when they inevitably come calling if Nash moves on.

The Daily News reported that the Suns hope to bring Nash back on a two-year, $20 million deal, whereas Nash has previously said he would prefer a three-year contract. The article goes on to say the Suns view the Knicks, Nets and Raptors as their top competitors for Two Time, which is strange because if Nash wants to play for a non-contender he presumably would stay in Phoenix.

However, “if they lose Steve, then they plan to go after Deron, hard,” said a person with knowledge of the Suns’ plans to The Post. “They know he loves golf and they’re going to try to sell him on going out there.”

Again, this is hardly news. If Dwight Howard were an unrestricted free agent the Suns would surely try to sell him on the Valley as well. Every team with cap space and even some without it will go hard after D-Will, particularly those in the market for a point guard.

Aside from the golf and the weather, the Suns can sell him on their lineage of All-Star point guards and the way the point guard has traditionally been the focal point of their attack. Perhaps his old Utah teammate Ronnie Price can put in a good word for the franchise as well.

Signing Williams in his prime would immediately vault the Suns into the playoff picture, particularly if they supplement his signing with a solid draft pick and another good free agent signing or two, which should be possible if Josh Childress is amnestied.

But I find it hard to believe D-Will would seriously consider the Suns over his hometown Dallas Mavericks (with a second star already in place in Dirk) or a Nets team that can pay him the most money. Unless he likes to golf that much, I don’t see what the Suns can offer that the Mavs or Nets cannot.

Still, if this report is true, it’s encouraging to hear the Suns’ front office plans to go all-out to obtain the best available talent on the market.

Nash open to sign-and-trade?

Steve Nash broke KJ’s franchise assist record in early February, and he may have one final assist in him if he’s headed out the door, according to a report by Steve Kyler of HoopsWorld:

“Word has i[t] Nash and the Suns have agreed that if Nash is leaving Phoenix that the franchise would help facilitate a sign and trade deal to [e]nsure Steve gets the maximum dollars for his services and the Suns get something in return for him. Meaning all bets are off on where Nash lands, as cap space and exception money won’t be a huge factor.

The Suns have made it clear they would do a multi-year deal for Nash in the $10 million per year range to [e]nsure Nash stays in Phoenix.

There is still a very real shot that Nash, who has thrived in Phoenix’s environment, chooses to stay; however the Suns will have to make some serious roster improvements to be the front runner.

Nash’s connection with the support and medical staff in Phoenix is a real trump card, as Nash does have spondylolisthesis in his back, and that will factor into his decision. Nash has remained fairly healthy in Phoenix and has played far longer than most thought he would as a result. Nash routinely credits the Phoenix training staff as a key reason why.”

Obviously it would make sense for Nash to be open to a sign-and-trade because it expands his potential destinations beyond teams with cap space (if he does not want to take a below market deal) and allows him to milk more dollars out of a potential new team. That it could help the Suns salvage an asset for their trouble could make Nash feel better about leaving Phoenix if he does just that as well.

In other Nash news, ESPN’s Marc Stein and Chad Ford reported that the Raptors plans on being a “determined suitor” for Nash.

I’m sure he would love to play for his home country team as Raptors fans adore Nash, but I feel like if he bolts it will be for a contender, not a homecoming.

And 1

Mirza Teletovic has agreed to a buyout with Caja Laboral, according to Marca.com, and from my limited Spanish skills the Suns are one of four teams interested.

Teletovic is a 6-foot-9, 26-year-old power forward who averaged 21.7 points a game for the third-best team in the Spain ACB league.

Tags: Deron Williams Steve Nash

  • Rishi

    Well with a sign and trade in place, this opens up more possibilities to trade Nash and obtain some valuable assets for him, but if he wants to go to a contender, then getting a first round draft pick back if its say a number 29 pick along with another player isn’t going to do much… Oh and whats with this rumor about Alonzo Gee and the Suns paying him 16 million dollars? How good is Gee anyway? He was undrafted to begin with and averages 10 pts a game but we already have Childress. I hope Gee doesn’t turn out to be a bad investment if they do get him…

  • http://www.valleyofthesuns.com Michael Schwartz

    Paying Alonzo Gee $16 million is the exact opposite of what Babby said they would do….

  • Scott

    Heh, I think the NY Daily News has been reading my comments on VotS. (“It’s a rumor from Phoenix of a sign and trade of Nash for Williams!”)

    If the Suns truly are interested in Mirza Teletovic, it’s probably because he shoots the 3 at 43%. His rebounding is weak, but it’s been steadily improving. His defense is also said to be weak, and at 26 he’s no spring chicken. The Suns can try him out, but unless he shows some good stuff he doesn’t normally show, I imagine he won’t get a spot unless maybe there is a massive roster change.

    As for Gee, I’m not sure what the notion of interest is based on, unless they’ve half-overheard EJ’s frequent comments about Gee during Cavs games. ;)

  • B. Cray Z.

    Suns have a fox guarding the hen house.

    Kerr made mistakes but quickly rectified them.

    That was because he was willing to take a risk & the risk was always what he believed to be best for the team. Suns now have Babby, a sleazy lawyer who wants to entrench his own power to control the Suns. Standing in his way is Nash. Nash is the established power, and deservedly so, of the team. This is why Babby will do everything he is able to in order to push Nash out the door. When he refused to take back Diaw, that was to give Nash a push. Also not taking back Louis or The Brazilian Blur gave another push to Nash. Nash would be happy to stay if the Suns showed a true interest in reuniting the team with some of its best bench players. Good news is that Nash is a competitor & will not go down without a fight, even if it means exposing Babby & his lack if any interest for the team. D-Will will sell tickets but is not a winning player for any team he has been with. He is not a leader like Nash & is poison in the locker room. Suns will become a worse team with him here. This will be a battle of good vs. evil.

    MUST reunite that killer bench unit. Let’s go SUNS!!!!

  • steve

    @B. Cray Z.

    Good vs evil? A little overdramatic, maybe?

    I get a kick out of fans that think people are out to destroy the world. You guys would be fun to watch in a political debate, whichever side of the fence you stand on.

    About Lou and Barbosa.

    Barbosa hasn’t had an above-average season since 08-09 (looking at PER, WS48, his traditional averages, advanced, shooting, anything). Maybe the Suns just realized quickly that they had signed an albatross.

    I hate how so many Suns fans like to romanticize Lou Amundson. I like him, cheered for him, loved his effort, but I can admit that he wasn’t very good. Amundson was an average player in PHX, and PHX has a system that makes a lot of BAD players look average or good. He has never been good anywhere else, or even average. If the Suns can turn any old bad players into an average player, then why would it necessarily have to be Amundson? I would have liked to keep him, fyi. I just don’t think it was a matter of anyone wanting to be “evil” by not re-signing him. Conventional wisdom at the time had Amundson seeking a $4M contract due to his career year (in a contract year, btw) in 09-10. I wouldn’t want Amundson for $4M, and neither should you. He didn’t get it, obviously, because he wasn’t worth it, but even at his current price, it’s not like he’s a steal.

    I know it’s mostly pointless to bring up stats and reasonable positions with the “sky is falling” crowd, but I just can’t help myself.

    Tony will soon come with his Three Stooges reference. B. Cray Z will remind us that we need to reunite that killer bench unit. This new guy “Barnes” will soon be by to tell me that stats can’t tell us who’s better than who. Shazam will drop in to post some roughly tangential but definitely exaggerated stuff in an attempt to either stir up anger or lighten the mood (I’ve never been able to nail his intentions down)… Gotta love the VotS community.

  • KeZ

    It would be awsome if we could make a sign-n-trade with the Hawks. Nashty for Smith. We all know that Josh wants to leave the ATL and Nash would join a good playoff ready team in the eastern conference. I personally have nothing against having Bassy at the starting pg. position(that kid got heart and don´t take shit from nobody on defense), unless we can get DWill!

  • Matt

    Hey Mike S. I know more about the Suns than most but I’ve only been a Suns fan since 2004 so can you shed some light in the area of the Suns’ lack of interest in player development? It seems to me that the Suns haven’t really truly developed any young players since Barbosa, personally I thought Earl Clark under the right training and coaching could’ve been a good player(not all star but at least a solid rotation player). Lopez whom I don’t think we really worked on either because since the 2009-2010 season he’s been more or less the same player. What are your thoughts on that subject?
    -Because whether or not Steve comes back we’re in a rebuilding phase and nurturing young talent is crucial.

  • http://valleyofthesuns.com Michael Schwartz

    @Matt That’s true, nurturing young talent has been a weakness for this franchise the past eight years (although they did quite a nice job nurturing Matrix and Amare before that). The first reason comes down to all the picks they’ve traded. They just haven’t had a ton of young guys to develop while they were in Win Now mode. And then the guys they did have just haven’t developed, at least in Phoenix, when you look at players like Dragic and Clark (who I also thought would develop into a solid rotation player at least).

    Blanks said they are putting a major emphasis on player development now, and Babby lamented the fact that their only draftees on the roster are Lopez and Morris.

    There’s not much to say on the subject other than you are right, player development has been an issue since Amare/LB, but as they enter this rebuilding phase it’s good to know they are at least trying to make it a point of emphasis.

  • James

    If we had kept Dragic, we wouldn’t need another point guard and we could be going after someone like James Harden, though I’m sure the Thunder will do everything they can to keep him. Can you imagine though? Dragic, Harden and Gortat. That would be 3 great young players who could lead our team to a championship in a few years!

  • Matt

    @James
    The thunders most definitely won’t let harder get away however ibaka could be the odd man out given that they can only offer a big contract to one of those two guys and I’d imagine they’d trade ibaka to get something back because they wont let him walk for nothing. And marcin is already 27 even though he’s only been in the league 5 years.

  • Matt

    @Mike

    Thanks for the reply. And who do you think would be a good pick for us in draft? Do we roll the dice on rivers or go for waiters or maybe even Jeremy lamb?

  • Tony

    @Steve,

    that was pretty funny, I have to at least give you credit for that post.

    Michael, Michael, Michael!

    Are expectations so low that the Suns FO gets credit for doing the most obvious? In other words, with so much free cap space and one of the best pgs available as an unrestricted free agent, was it really that much of brilliant thinking or effort for the Three Stooges to say hey wait a minute, Williams is a free agent let’s try to sign him? I heard previously that they were also interested in Dwight Howard, so should they get credit for that interest?

    My point is that of course the FO is going to say they have interest in Williams as why wouldn’t they? He’s a premier pg in his prime with star power. By spreading such rumors, the Three Stooges hope to generate some interest in the Suns and make it look like they are at least seriously trying to improve this horrible lottery team. That way, when the team is once again a lottery team next season with an even worse record, they can claim they did all they could to improve the team. Now I know people like Steve and other Sarver-supporters will probably buy into this nonsense, but I highly doubt the majority of reasonable Suns fans will believe in the veracity of their propaganda.

    Let’s just be real for a minute. Objectively speaking, why would Williams have any interest in playing for the Suns? I suppose, if golfing really is that important to Williams, then the Suns would have the edge there. Also, I know that the Nets could do a sign-and-trade with Williams, so that he could make the same amount with the Suns as with the Nets.

    However, other than those two things, what else would attract him to play with the Suns over even the Nets? While the Nets have young talent in Lopez, Brooks, and if they resign him Humphries, who do the Suns have to entice him? Other than Gortat, there’s nobody else on the Suns team who Williams could feel confident enough that playing for the Suns would give him a good shot at winning a title. Had the Suns landed a top-3 pick this season, then maybe the potential of drafting an elite player might have helped. However, landing the 13th pick makes it very unlikely they do draft that caliber player.

    As you stated yourself Michael, the Mavs present a much better opportunity for Williams to win a championship. They already have a star player and let’s face it, Cuban is by far a much better owner than Sarver. That matters because Williams knows playing for the Mavs, that Cuban will spend whatever is necessary to make sure he has a championship caliber roster. Sarver on the otherhand? His goal seems to be to spend the least amount possible while producing a team just competitive enough to make the playoffs as an 8th seed, to subsequently then get swept in the 1st round. I know Steve and Scott will disagree, but ownership matters when it comes to where elite players decide to sign.

  • Ty-Sun

    I’ve been reading rumors that several teams are shopping their 1st round picks. New Orleans is openly shopping the #10 pick hoping that someone wants it enough to take Okafor or Ariza along with it. Toronto is shopping it’s #8 pick although I’ve heard nothing about what they want for it. And I’ve heard Houston is shopping one of it’s two 1st rounders (#14 and #16) to try to make a deal for a quality big. I’m sure we’ll hear a lot more rumors before the draft gets here but I hope that the Suns can somehow either move up in the draft or at least get someone else’s second round pick this year.

    And I still think it will take one of two things to get Steve Nash to leave the Suns. 1 – The Suns just decide that it’s time to part ways and don’t make him a good offer or 2 – Steve gets an offer he just can’t refuse from a contender. Hmmm… I wonder if Toronto is shopping their #8 pick in hope of bringing aboard another player that might make Steve take their interest in him more seriously?

  • KeZ

    @Tony

    You are always spot on with everything you write.

    Our FO is so bad that i can´t describe it in words. Dear lord, can we please trade our FO + our first rounder for OKC´s FO!? I must say, i´m not that worried if Nash leaves(huge Nashty fan btw). I really like Bassy´s game and could easily see him as our starting pg. I personally think we have bigger holes to fill in the lineup.

    Sorry for my english….i´m from Sweden!

  • Scott

    @Tony -

    It’s not that ownership doesn’t matter. It’s just that not everyone sees things the way you do.

    Cuban’s not a perfect owner, by the way. Look at what he just did to his championship team, and all this year he was dissing the old team – which should have been respected – by saying this one was better.

    Players know that owners are owners. They may or may not know basketball, they may or may not be nuts. The main thing is they have cash. If the player is in “championship now” mode, he wants to make sure he’s headed to a team with an open championship window. If he’s in “money now” mode, he wants a nice contract. If he’s in “I want to show off my game” mode, he wants to join a team where he’s going to get to play, and play in the way he thinks he shows himself in the best light. I suppose all these things indirectly relate to ownership, but aside from that, I don’t see ownership really having much to do with a player’s choice of where to go.

  • Tony

    @KeZ,

    thanks for the remarks. If only a deal to trade the Three Stooges to get the Thunder’s FO would be possible!! I wish!!

    @Michael,

    I’ve read rumors that the Grizz have Rudy Gay on the trade bloc to free up cap space. Any insider information on whether the dummies in the Suns FO plan on pursuing him? Although he’s probably not quite worth his contract, he would certainly be a huge upgrade for the Suns, enough of one that Nash might be tempted to stay.

  • Scott

    @KeZ -

    The Suns are not unique in having a FO that seems to miss more than hit. I think most here would agree that we’d like to see the Suns organization get its act together and scout better, draft better, trade better, issue better contracts, and so on.

  • Scott

    @Ty-Sun -

    It seems so unlikely that NO and Toronto would be shopping around their picks, other than it being business as usual to see what other teams might offer. It could also be that other teams are asking NO and Toronto about their picks, and this is getting to the media in reverse, which happens a lot.

    As for Houston, I do believe they’re looking to solidify their C spot, so that rumor seems in line with their past behavior and more believable. (And I still think they’re a possible destination for Howard. Just like Phoenix is a PG-oriented town, Houston is a C town.)

    @Tony -

    Gay had a lot of trade rumors last year too. I recommended that the Suns try to get him last year, and while I didn’t follow him at all this past season, if he’s still okay and producing as usual, I’d still generally support getting him.

    Iguodala is another player that usually has trade rumors, and again while I did not follow him this last year, in general I think he’d be another player the Suns could shoot for.

  • KeZ

    @Scott -

    It will be an interesting summer. It´s time for the FO to prove us wrong and take us back to the promiseland.

  • Matt

    Our most valuable trade chip right now is Marcin. Speaking of Houston they’ve been looking for a QUALITY since losing Yao so we can trade them Marcin for Marcus Morris(Markieff’s Brother) and a first rounder, but I don’t really think that would be enough. But I can see that trade working out if a third team gets involved. I personally want Marcin to get shipped out because if anyone watched all 66 Suns game this year knows that 50% of Marcin is made up by Steve Nash, and with Steve most likely out the door we should try to get a young prospect and a 1st round pick for him(maybe more given he’s a quality big). Marcin is 27 years old and if we’re going to build this team up “Brick by brick” according to Lon Babby then it’d make sense to deal Gortat. Another good trade scenario would be trading Gortat and Frye to New Orleans because they’re also looking for quality bigs to pair with Davis. New Orleans also has the #10 pick, Xaiver Henry, Al-Farouq Aminu, which they can package along with the 10th pick for Gortat and Frye(Giving us a huge relief on salary cap); this scenario would be a win win for both teams as New Orleans would have a SOLID front line with Davis & Gortat with Frye as a backup and this also works out for us because now we have 2 lottery picks, some help on the wing with Aminu, and with Frye out of the picture Markieff can have more playing time to develop.

  • http://valleyofthesuns.com Michael Schwartz

    @Matt It’s hard to say at this point in the process but I like Terrence Ross and certainly Lamb if he falls. A point guard or Rivers could be interesting as well.

    @Tony That was exactly the point I was trying to make. No duh the Suns would be interested in the best player on the market who happens to play PG if Nashty leaves. I don’t mean to give the Suns credit for doing the obvious by potentially pursuing him, but I would be impressed if they are actually seriously considered despite the reasons other destinations appear to be a better fit.

    I haven’t heard anything specifically on Gay, but as I’ve written a few times the Suns have said in the past they think their big move will come via trade, not FA, in all likeliehood. Babby did bring up the possibility of making a lopsided trade with their cap space, and a move like that would fit that bill.

  • Ty-Sun

    As for Toranto, that could be the case but NO is going to go all out to resign Gordon and with Davis a lock as their #1 pick then why not try to shop Okafor and/or Ariza along with the #10 pick? I’ve read multiple stories on many websites about that “rumor”. They want to clear out cap space. They may even want to resign Kaman instead of of just letting him go via free agency and I doubt they can keep Kaman and Okafor AND Gordon without going into the luxury tax range. And of course the would want something back in that trade so I think they really are fishing with the #10 pick as the main bait. NO hasn’t used their amnesty yet so they are dangling Okafor and Ariza along with the #10 pick to see what kind of bites they get. With the #1 pick (Davis) and Gordon, the #10 pick is a luxury they can afford to shed if they can also shed some unwanted salary in the process and get a reasonable return in the trade. Whether they find a team that is willing to bite or not, Okafor or Ariza will be amnestied by NO this year… probably Okafor.

  • Tony

    @Michael,

    thanks for the response. I know you were making that same point, but I take it one step further in that even if the FO seriously considers Williams, who I think is overrated anyway, it still makes no difference as to whether they deserve any credit for such consideration. Words don’t matter, results do and so if they somehow land Williams or even make a lopsided trade only giving up cap space and receiving Gay in return, or other such moves, then they will have earned credit.

    @Matt,

    I couldn’t agree more with you, although I think Gortat is about 75% offensively dependent on Nash and since Nash is still the best passer in the NBA, if Nash walks, Suns should trade Gortat for 1st round picks or at least to move up from their current 13th pick. As you mentioned, Gortat is already 27 and in his prime, so I concur that it makes no sense to keep him when the probability of the Suns becoming relevant again likely exceeds his prime years as a player.

  • Anthony Lane

    I think the Suns should try to keep Nash. Try to get Rudy Gay somehow (So tired of Grant Hill), and get Jamal Crawford. Maybe get Austin Rivers or Dion Waiters in the draft. I think then they will be a lot better. We still need a power forward but you can’t have everything. LOL

  • steve

    @Anthony -

    Josh Smith, Pau Gasol, Kevin Garnett, LaMarcus Aldridge, Paul Millsap, DeMarcus Cousins, Carlos Boozer, Serge Ibaka… What do all of them have in common? They can all the play the 4 exceedingly well, and there have been rumors about their respective teams shopping each of them. Getting a quality PF will not be a difficult task, in my opinion, if the front office desires that.

  • MikeM

    I didn’t know the Blazers were shopping Aldrige, I’d love to be able to get him. Although when I just googled him it said he’s recovering from a “deadly blood virus”, sheesh hope he’s ok.

    I know this is a long shot but imagine doing a sign and trade with Nash to Portland for Aldridge. Then somehow luring D-Will, because then at least we’d a pretty good frontcourt between Gortat and Aldridge. A starting lineup of Deron Williams, SG TBD, Dudley/Hill, Lamarcus Aldridge, and Marcin Gortat. That could be a formidable playoff team and D-Will, Aldridge, Dudley and Gortat are all about the same age (26-27) so they’d have a solid core to build around for a good 4-5 seasons.

    Very unlikely, but a boy can dream.

  • Anthony Lane

    If we could get Josh Smith, i’ll happy as hell!! I wanted them to get him for years!!! Aldridge would be nice as well.

  • Anthony Lane

    @MikeM…… That would be awesome if that were to ever happen! I totally agree with you