Over a month into NBA free agency, Phoenix Suns restricted free agent Alex Len remains unsigned. Very little has been heard about the 2013 first round pick so far this summer. With all the trade rumors circling the Suns right now, Len’s possible impending departure has been slightly overlooked.
Back in June the Suns made a qualifying offer of $4.2 million dollars to C Alex Len. Since then very little has been heard on the Len front. The majority of NBA free agents have signed and the period from August to training camp is normally pretty quiet in the NBA. For the Suns, outside of a Kyrie Irving trade, settling the Alex Len situation is likely the last step of the offseason. As of the most recent news, Len has yet to inform Phoenix of his decision about the qualifying offer.
The lack of news regarding Len leads me to believe that he has not had the type of interest from opposing NBA teams as he and his agent would have liked. During last season I was concerned that Len might receive a $15 million/year offer during free agency, an amount that I believe was far overpriced for his accomplishments thus far but also seemed to be more common for big men in the new CBA (see Timofey Mozgov).
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Now, I think the likely offer he is to get from Suns will be in the range of 2-3 years at $6-8 million dollars per year, if he signs a long-term deal at all. It is possible that Len signs the single year qualifying offer of $4.2 million and plays out the year to be an unrestricted free agent after the season. If he does the latter, I would be surprised. Len hasn’t been consistent enough to know that he will earn a big deal next summer. In fact, another bad season could sink his value to league minimum status. If the Suns offer him something in the range of $20 million over 2 or 3 years, I think he would be foolish to turn it down.
As the sports world turns it’s attention to football, the Suns still have theirs on Alex Len. Regardless of the outcome of the situation, we should know very soon where Len will be playing next season.