Phoenix Suns rebuild: Where James Jones goes from here
What will the 2020-2021 version of the James Jones Phoenix Suns team look like for the upcoming season? Considering that the Suns will be in the upper third of the league in cap space as well as having the 10th pick in the draft but yet still needing more than one star, Jones has a very good chance to make this team much better than even the exciting Bubble Suns from last season.
I suggested the Suns should trade Oubre, and presented some reasons why.
Currently, all the air in the room is being sucked out by the experts that are focusing on a trade option that features the Golden State Warriors and their second pick in the November 18th NBA draft for Oubre and the Suns No.10 pick. My projection of this year’s No. 2 pick salary is based on last year’s 2nd pick which was $8.7 million if the salary cap remains the same at $109.1 million. I wouldn’t make the deal with the Warriors.
Consider for a moment that the Phoenix Suns paid $8.1 million for Deandre Ayton as the first pick in the 2018 draft, is there a player in this draft that is worth what Ayton was paid as the first pick in his draft? In comparison, if this draft was traded on the stock exchange it would be considered a penny stock, so it would be foolish for the Phoenix Suns to trade a pick at No. 10 that could very well render the same quality as the No. 2 pick in this year’s draft.
There are a lot of different scenarios concerning Oubre, but most have the Suns taking back too much money in return. I believe Oubre will get traded in free agency unless a draft deal comes along that makes a lot of financial and or quality sense for this current Suns team.
I project that the Phoenix Suns will keep their pick unless it is packaged with Oubre and draft one of these four players in order and my understanding that the first two players, power forward Obi Toppin, the 22 yr old from Dayton, and point guard Tyrese Haliburton will have already been drafted.
More realistically I see them picking between combo wing Devin Vassell from Florida State or power forward Jalen Smith from Maryland.
At some point soon, James Jones is going to have to figure out defense wins championships which is why the Phoenix Suns are going to have the select the only player in this draft that has a 7-2 wingspan, is defensive-minded, a rim protector, and has 3-point range, that player is Jalen Smith. Though he would be an early project, Smith has a high ceiling and is a potential Larry Nance clone with his agility, shot-blocking, and outside shot.
I can also see a deal being made in the early to mid-teens if the Phoenix Suns see the opportunity to grab 22-year-old combo guard Desmond Bane, who arguably is the best shooter in the draft from TCU.
After the draft, I can see Jones upgrading the bench tremendously in free agency starting with backups for Devin Booker and the Suns starting small forward. Alec Burks who like Booker with a smaller volume of shots, can shoot anywhere on the court while Justin Holiday who is an older version of Mikal Bridges could fill those needs for the Phoenix Suns. To get those players the Suns should have enough cap space to pay them more than the other teams that will go after them in free agency.
Finishing up they would be looking at a high price power forward in the $15 million-plus range or two $8 million to $10 million type players that they would plug into the power forward and center positions. Based on another article that I wrote, my choice would be to re-sign Dario Saric as one of those two players.
Thanks to James Jones I believe that the Phoenix Suns would be hard press not to come away with a better team this offseason than last, a team that will go where no Phoenix Suns team has gone in the last decade, the playoffs.
That felt good to write, they will be more fun to watch.