Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

Rumors: Suns could trade 27th NBA Draft pick for future 1st

By now, it’s pretty obvious that the Phoenix Suns are willing to trade any of their first round picks. The 14th and 18th selections could be part of a blockbuster deal or give Phoenix the ability to move up in the lottery in the 2014 NBA Draft, but that leaves the 27th overall choice standing on its own.

What’s its value? To the Suns, perhaps not much — at least not this season.

Rather than add a rookie salary to the books despite having few minutes to doll out, the Suns could trade the 27th selection. Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated is hearing whispers that Phoenix is looking to trade the 27th pick for a future first-round pick, an option that Ryan McDonough was open about following the season.

Even if the Suns turn their first two choices into a single draft pick, it’s likely there won’t be room on the roster for a player drafted at the end of the first round. Alex Len and Archie Goodwin figure to assume similar roles to last season, or bigger ones. Assuming Phoenix keeps even one of Eric Bledsoe, P.J. Tucker and Channing Frye — all of their futures are in flux this summer to varying degrees — playing time for any rookie will be scarce.

Of course, everything is fluid.

Aside from one star-studded day on Monday, a week of draftee workouts has largely given the Suns a peek at players projected to be picked in the second round and late first round.

A draft-and-stash prospect might be an option, as Mannix notes. Or if a player McDonough and his team perceives to have lottery talent falls, there is the option the Suns could come away with a steal.

  • 4everis2long

    I hope the Suns are very careful about trading away a 1st round pick in a relatively deep draft for a future 1st round pick in what might be a weak draft. Anyway I understand the concern as there will only be so many roster spots and contracts the Suns can reasonably endure.

  • EarlBlackJesusMonroe

    This doesn’t make all that much sense. McD wheels and deals to stockpile draft picks and now he doesn’t want to use them. If they retain Bledsoe that is nine players under contract including Frye who is sure to pick up his option. Next summer is when their salaries are mostly cleared off the books.

    A #27 pick would only cost Phoenix $930,500 in the upcoming season and only $972,300 in ’15-’16. Playing time? Nobody is expecting guys picked at #27 and #50 to play anyway. Isn’t that what all the excitement about taking over the Bakersfield Jams was all about? Selecting players like Elfrid Payton or Napier and Dwight Powell and let them stay down at Bakersfield all season?

    Suns will still need to fill out the roster with a minimum 13 players. So if they bring back Tucker that is still three more players. Bringing back Ish would cost Phoenix $981,084 for one season. This means Alex Oriahki will most likely be signed for the season as he would only cost $525,093 for one season. Players like Christmas and Randolph should not be brought back.

    You can’t discover that late draft pick steal if you don’t draft them. This is a bit disheartening. Kevin Love seems like an extreme long-shot as I believe Boston is in the driver’s seat in that deal. Monroe? I sure hope they don’t bring in old man Pau Gasol. Come-on McD, what are you working on?

    • 4everis2long

      Really good post EBJM

    • coachj

      Good post, but I am confused on one point… Oriahki is neither signed to a contract, nor worth anything to the Suns. Why would they sign him?

      As I see it, the Suns have 10 guys who are/will be signed:

      Frye [opt-out deadline is June 30]
      Bledsoe [they will sign]
      Morris x2
      Ish [he has a team option and no way they let him go]

      That is 10. Randolph is a Team Option, and I think he is gone. Dionte was insurance, but he has little value to them. That leaves 3 spots to get to the league minimum.

      Suns will have to re-sign PJ, taking one spot. That leaves two.

      So, they then could draft 3 and get to 14 on the roster, or simply stash a guy overseas and stay at 13 with all their picks. Then there is the Leandro question. Personally, I have never been a big fan of his. He is a black hole [and not racially speaking] and offers little more than scoring. However, off the bench, he could be very useful as he still has ability and only requires a veteran’s minimum salary. They may keep him if he is healthy.

      EBJM, don’t you think that the act of acquiring all of those picks was done with the mindset of a 25 win team that was full of malcontents? Things have changed dramatically and we are not in the same position we were in a year ago. These picks may be more valuable as leverage to obtain more value now or later. Or, they could be of extreme value because as we all know, GM’s always draft the gems and never miss on anyone :)

      I am all for trading them if we can acquire another asset without breaking up what makes this team so special. I think you have to keep the dragic-bledsoe combo and I think Tucker plays a big role as well [defense, toughness and chemistry]. I think you could replace everyone else as long as whoever you bring in keeps with the chemistry.

      The big question here is whether there are assets PHX can realistically acquire that are worth it. Looking at the current landscape, there are not a lot of guys I am excited about if I have to give up Dragic or Bledsoe. Sure, there is Love, but he isn’t coming here. Do you make a run at Thaddeous? What would you have to give up for him? Do you try to pry Paul Milsapp away? Or a Horford? Could you even do it? Is Greg Monroe a guy you give a lot up for, or should you focus on Drummond [even if that is a possibility]? Do you throw something to the Raps for Derozan [like they would trade him]? Is Gordon Hayward worth as much as his hype? Hey, Chandler Parsons just opted out – do we throw big money at him? Or do we wait to see if LeCrampopts out goes to Cleveland and then sign an old DWade [that was a joke BTW].

      Fact is, anyone worth trading for would require giving up something that is going to make all of us cringe hard.

      Trading multiple picks to move up makes absolutely NO sense in this draft. Nobody has a clue or a consensus of where anyone might get drafted, so we could conceivably draft someone at 18 that is actually better than the pick at 14, or the pick at 8-12, where we would end up after the trade. My guess is it would be the Hornets pick, because I don’t see us getting higher for those two picks without a player involved. I think we could almost as easily get a guy we think might go 9th and he falls to us at 14 anyway.

      Trading one of these picks for a future 1st is not a bad idea and I support it. We do not need 3 rookies. We may need a rookie or two, but a third is not necessary. We do need to work on a trade or a free agent, and our existing players need to work on getting better.

      • EarlBlackJesusMonroe

        Alex Oriahki fills a roster spot at half of what it would cost a veteran like Randolph. IMO the guaranteed contracts of 1st rd picks is the hindrance to using all three picks. Who would you rather see in Bakersfield, Christmas or a late pick like Elfrid Payton or Dwight Powell? We all know Christmas sucks so bring in the new rookies.

        The majority seems to believe the Suns can improve without adding anything. That this roster can improve with another year together. I’m not one of them. This team over-achieved because they had a roster full of players who wanted to prove themselves and developed great chemistry together because they knew the sum of their parts were much better than any individual’s not named Goran Dragic.

        It will be difficult to replicate because a lot of Suns will be looking for contracts. Channing Frye might even develop a bit of an attitude if the Suns don’t negotiate an extension. Markieff is the guy who has to make a difference for Phoenix next year and he and his brother are in the final year of their rookie contracts. If the Suns don’t commit, they may regress.

        The early Sarver regime gave away draft picks like they were candy on Halloween night. Then when they finally started to use them the ineptness of the supposed “master talent evaluator” came shining through. McD has them and knows how to draft. So what is the hold-up? This is supposedly a deep draft.

        The Suns should be learning from their past mistakes and taking notes from R.C. Buford. I don’t have a problem with Phoenix using the 18th on a player like Capela and leaving him in Europe. It worked with Tiaglo Splitter and Marc Gasol and Chicago owns the rights to Nikola Mirotic.

        Tucker is a great chemistry guy and provides toughness and veteran leadership but despite all of the accolades surrounding his defense he still only received 13 votes for the All-Defensive teams. He needs to be paid economically and be coming off the bench. It would be sad to see him leave but he certainly isn’t a necessity.

        Same thing with Ish Smith. He is going to be a career 3rd string PG. No shame in that but if you an opportunity to upgrade with a rookie who appears to have a higher ceiling, You do it. Look at Reggie Jackson of the Thunder. Why pass on a player like that because you have a Ish Smith?

        Barbosa? They couldn’t possibly be thinking of bringing him back. Too injury-prone and the same defenseless, drive to the rim with his head down Barbosa who only shot 28% from the three-point arc.

        I agree with DBreezy and 4everis2long in that Phoenix is not nearly as good as they believe they are and should scoop up all available talent that presents itself through the draft. This trading a 1st rd pick for one in the future has rarely worked out for them. In the Brian Grant salary dump the Suns swapped their 21st pick in ’06, Rajon Rondo, for the Celtic’s 24th in ’07 who turned out to be Rudy Fernandez who has returned to Spain several years ago.

        What is so awful about having three rookies? Somebody has to sit at the end of the bench and with the Suns taking over the Bakersfield Jam they now have their own farm team. You can’t find them if you don’t draft them. Look at the Spurs who are in the Finals. They draft Parker 28th, Manu 57th, Splitter 28th, & Cory Joseph 29th. Other teams drafted Green, Diaw, Mills, Pendergraph (Ayres), Belinelli, & Daye. Buford drafted George Hill at #26 and turned him into Kawhi Leonard.

        I don’t see any issue with drafting three players.

  • DBreezy

    I don’t really see why they want trade this pick for a future 1st at all. EBJM has mentioned the salary, Foreveris mentioned this draft’s depth. I would add that I don’t see why management would act like this team has arrived, especially in the West. They need all of the talent they can get with as affordable contracts as possible. The current team is built with a good number of late lottery and beyond, and 2nd round picks. Is it really that inconceivable that in a strong draft, that the trend continues? Would it really be a surprise if in a year or so, a guy like Austin or McGary found themselves in the rotation here?

    • 4everis2long

      The more I think about it the less I like it and I never really liked it before. When you consider the Suns will likely lose at least two of the following, Bled, Dragic, Tucker, Green, Fry within a year, I am puzzled DBreezy why the Suns want to do this in this draft. I hope McD does not outsmart himself. I agree with you that the West is loaded and we haven’t proved we even have enough talent to make the playoffs, yet we are considering trading a 1st round pick in a deep draft?

      • DBreezy

        Exactly. To me this is where McD and Babby have to step back and be somewhat cold in their evaluations relative to the coaching staff. Not just financially which gets more attention, but with respect to the players’ games themselves. I have no expectations for anyone to fail next season, but it seems like a realistic possibility in several cases. Then you look at a conference that probably only has one team that will be worse than last season and it seems like it’s way too early to be counting chickens.