1 player the Suns could trade to improve their title odds

If the Phoenix Suns traded this one player, they would be a step closer to contending for an NBA Championship.
Minnesota Timberwolves v Phoenix Suns - Game Four
Minnesota Timberwolves v Phoenix Suns - Game Four / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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Why they will be able to trade Nurkic

Believe it or not, there is a path to moving Nurkic, and it starts with his contract. Right now he is entering the second last year of his current deal, and is due to make $37 million across the next two seasons. What that means is that Nurkic is approaching becoming an expiring contract.

On top of that, the $18 million he is making for this coming season is a nice number to be able to trade. As a result of being in that second apron, the Suns can't stack contracts on top of each other to go and get a star player. They also can't take back a dollar more than they send out in a trade, which makes Nurkic's contract so valuable.

The Suns would probably have to attach a second rounder or two in order to get a deal done - they shouldn't even think about adding their 2031 first - but that wouldn't stop them if a trade partner emerged. The prospect of getting another player who could actually help, while Plumlee, Oso Igodaro and Jalen Bridges could eat up the center minutes.

Nurkic also had a bounceback season last year, making him more moveable than he was in the past. He gave the Suns basically an 11/11 each night, was a notable part of their offensive schemes and only missed six games all campaign. Bundle all that together, and the prospect of trading him suddenly doesn't seem so ridiculous.