Phoenix Suns fans: start rooting for the Brooklyn Nets’ offseason

D'Angelo Russell Phoenix Suns (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
D'Angelo Russell Phoenix Suns (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images) /

With the surprise trade on June 6, between the Atlanta Hawks and Brooklyn Nets, Phoenix Suns fans should now start rooting for the Nets and their quest for two max contract signees.

When the Brooklyn Nets and Atlanta Hawks consummated their surprise trade on June 6, Phoenix Suns fans everywhere raised and eyebrow and perked up their ears in interest for what could potentially happen next.

The deal essentially creates enough cap space for the Brooklyn Nets to acquire two max players (or one and re-up D’Angelo Russel), setting themselves up to be huge players in this summer’s free agency rush.

The deal is particularly interesting because of the continued discussion that Kyrie Irving is leaning more heavily towards signing with the Nets, which while interesting in and of itself, could very well be the first step to the duel acquisition of he and Kevin Durant, two superstar players who have been linked to one another in rumors for some time.

It is unsure if Kyrie would sign with the Nets as their only max acquisition or if his move from Boston would come with the caveat that a second star joined him to guarantee championship competitiveness (one can’t help but wonder too what wheeling and dealing he is involved in behind the scenes).

However, if the Nets can lure a second star along with the point guard, then the presumption is that D’Angelo Russell’s rights will have to be renounced by Brooklyn prior to the two new star’s signing, making him an unrestricted free agent, and arguably in that top-tier of remaining available free agents – a subject I have written about very recently here.

This is where the Phoenix Suns obviously come in and where fans should now not only keep an eye on all rumors surrounding the Nets, and arguably even root  for Brooklyn to sign those two max players.

The difference between Russell and other potential star long-term point guards the Suns can acquire is that if Russell has his rights renounced, Phoenix wouldn’t have to trade any assets to acquire him.

They might have to trade assets to make room for his contract, but the key there is that they can then acquire additional assets in that corresponding move.

Russell’s strength as a player is on the offensive end, a competent scorer with wonderful distribution abilities, and would make the Suns a flashy and offensively exciting team right away – something they have not been for a very long time.

The trade off with signing the former Laker is that he lacks the ability to lock down a single player on the defensive end, an issue that when next to Devin Booker, would make the Suns’ backcourt as porous as a kitchen sieve.

In that situation, while the Suns might score 120 points more often than they give up, he won’t be helping Phoenix keep opponents under 100 anytime soon.

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Free agency has essentially begun in the NBA when the Brooklyn Nets and Atlanta Hawks made this surprise deal.

If D’Angelo Russell is their target, James Jones and fans of the Suns should now root  for the Brooklyn Nets to sign two max players, causing them to renounce Russell’s rights, giving Phoenix the opportunity to snag him, pairing him up with best friend Devin Booker, via unrestricted free agency.