With Kevin Durant recommitting to the Brooklyn Nets and Donovan Mitchell traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers, the NBA media is now trying to predict which big name player will be on the trade block next. Although it’s hard to gauge, one floated player would be a dream trade target for the Phoenix Suns.
The situation at the Oklahoma City Thunder is a fascinating one, with the rest of the league wondering when they’ll pull the trigger on making a move up the standings. They already have a plethora of talent on their roster but, armed with a stockpile of future picks, the rebuilding phase is still in progress.
Circumstances have been clouded further by a season-ending injury to number two overall pick Chet Holmgren, increasing the likelihood that the Thunder will again try to procure a high draft selection.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander would be an ideal fit for the Phoenix Suns should he voice his displeasure around the direction of the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Some have considered Shai Gilgeous-Alexander to be outside the Thunder’s timeline, an incredible notion given he’s just 24 years of age. He’s been the biggest chip that they’ve got in this rebuild, having been involved in the trade that sent Paul George to the Los Angeles Clippers in the 2019 offseason.
After a year of playoff experience, playing alongside now Suns point-guard Chris Paul, Gilgeous-Alexander has been a star at a losing organization. It’s this frustrating factor, according to Bill Simmons, that could see him become the next star available.
"“Are we sure you can’t get SGA from OKC?…Would cost somewhere a little more than Dejounte Murray and a little less than (Donovan) Mitchell…How many years in a row can you tell SGA that it won’t be this year again…At some point you just lose your mind if you’re on these shitty teams that are never headed anywhere.”"
Both Simmons and Ryen Russillo confirmed they’d heard that Gilgeous-Alexander is available. If that’s the case, then the Suns would be derelict in their duties not to go all in on the 6’6″ guard. Phoenix could start a three-guard lineup with elite playmaking, scoring and enormous offensive potential overall.
Furthermore, he and Devin Booker could provide an All-Star backcourt over the next 7-8+ years, allowing Paul to gently relieve his duties without enormous pressure. Gilgeous-Alexander is starting his five-year, $179 million contract this season.
The Canadian averaged 24.5 points, 5 rebounds and 5.9 assists last season. While those numbers may take a hit on a better Suns team, his addition would automatically catapult Phoenix back into, at minimum, a top three favorite for the title.
We know Oklahoma City’s general manager, Sam Presti, covets future first-round picks. The Suns have them ready to go which, combined with Cameron Johnson and some expiring contracts, could form a compelling deal should the Thunder decide to deal their star player.