15 People who turned their backs on the Phoenix Suns

These former Suns did not leave on the best terms.
Phoenix Suns, Robert Horry
Phoenix Suns, Robert Horry / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
12 of 15

4. Charles Barkley

The Suns had made the playoffs four straight years before trading for Barkley. The Hall of Famer won MVP and pushed Phoenix to the NBA Finals in his first season in the Valley of the Sun. They could not defeat Michael Jordan’s Bulls, but there was plenty of excitement.

It was the high water mark for Barkley in Phoenix. They were knocked out in the second round of the playoffs in each of the next two years before suffering a first-round defeat in 1996. The Hall of Famer was not in the running for MVP but continued to play at an All-Star level before things went south.

After the 1996 campaign, Barkley requested a trade and things got messy. The 6’6 forward did not hold back in trashing the organization after his exit. Barkley wanted to finish his career with the Suns, but the franchise shopping him and not putting enough talent around him ultimately ended his tenure early.

The trade request coupled with his public bashing of the Suns earned Charles Barkley a place on this list. Yes, he is one of the all-time greats, but even they can turn their backs on an organization. The Hall of Famer never won a championship but got close in Phoenix. It was sad this story did not have a better ending.