The Phoenix Suns are in a totally new era now. This era features a big four of Kevin Durant, Devin Booker, Bradley Beal, and even Deandre Ayton. Two players, Booker and Ayton, are left from the 2020-21 NBA Finals era of the Suns, truly proving that the franchise has moved on.
But, they are still a team in win-now mode, which likely won’t change for some years. However, that doesn’t mean they can’t keep moving to bring in some guys to help this team improve.
One move we know they won’t be making is bringing back a former player from that era, who just recently became a free agent.
Suns cannot sign Cameron Payne
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the San Antonio Spurs are waiving guard Cameron Payne, who arrived in San Antonio in a trade from the Suns. Payne, a veteran guard with playoff experience, can now sign with the team of his choice and can even join a contender.
That team just won’t be the Suns.
According to Bobby Marks, Payne had a $6.5 million expiring contract and is ineligible to sign with Phoenix. You cannot trade a player to another team; that player gets waived, and the original trading team re-signs him, which is why he is ineligible. In order for the Suns to get him, Paye would have to sign with another team and get waived by that team before the Suns can offer him a contract.
Payne was somewhat of a fan favorite in Phoenix, and rightfully so. When he came into the game, you knew there was going to be trash talk and energy, and that’s with him not doing anything. Now, if Payne made a big play, everyone in the arena was going to know about it.
While he is ineligible to sign with the Suns, Phoenix needs another guard with ball-handling abilities, especially someone who is a veteran with playoff experience like him. Unfortunately, we will likely see him in a Suns uniform in 2023-24.