3 stars the Phoenix Suns may be dumping Chris Paul to sign.
Free Agent No. 3: Fred VanVleet, Point Guard
If the Phoenix Suns move on from Chris Paul, their most glaring need would be for a point guard, especially if they waive or trade Cameron Payne to open up the most possible space. Fred VanVleet is a former champion who could step into that role with the Suns.
While he is no longer the lockdown point-of-attack defender he was when first entering the league, VanVleet is unique among most star guards in that he is also a stout defender. He has averaged no fewer than 1.7 steals per game in a season since becoming a starter, and his strength lets him stay upright against larger players after cross-matches and switches.
On offense, VanVleet is a career 37.3 percent 3-point shooter who does not get as many clean looks as he’d like, often playing on teams with compromised spacing. In Phoenix his shot diet would get much healthier, and as a result it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him shoot closer to 40 percent. He can handle, pass, get to the rim and shoot; he doesn’t have elite burst or separation, but he knows how to score.
The Suns could start VanVleet and Booker in one of the best backcourts in the entire league, with Durant at power forward and a couple of minimum players at the three and five. The more intriguing option is if the Toronto Raptors would like Ayton back in a sign-and-trade; in that scenario, the Suns could retain many of their outgoing free agents at modest amounts.