While most NBA teams are preparing for their upcoming training camps, the Phoenix Suns are not yet done making moves this offseason. The Suns recently engaged in a trade deal with the Houston Rockets, sending Brandon Knight and Marquese Chriss to Houston for Ryan Anderson and De’Anthony Melton. Trading Chriss makes sense for the Suns, as they currently have a logjam at their frontcourt.
However, many people were puzzled with their decision to trade Knight. After losing Eric Bledsoe and Knight, the Suns could enter the 2018-19 NBA season without a starting-caliber point guard on their roster. Their recent trade with the Rockets created the speculation that the Suns are planning to make Devin Booker their lead playmaker.
After the Rockets-Suns trade, John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports reported that Phoenix remains active on the trade market looking for their new starting point guard. Gambadoro revealed that the Suns have tried to inquire about the availability of Kemba Walker of the Charlotte Hornets, Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers, and Terry Rozier of the Boston Celtics via trade, but as of now, their respective teams show no interest in making a deal.
“Suns have definitely been trying to trade for a front tier point guard — Lillard, Walker, Rozier — but to no avail. Situation at point guard now is not ideal and Phoenix will have to make a trade but Milwaukee pick that they own is not that valuable.”
It’s not a surprise why the Suns are targeting the likes of Damian Lillard, Kemba Walker, and Terry Rozier. Despite the improvement they made this offseason, the Suns are not expected to make a huge impact in the upcoming 2018-19 NBA season. In the ESPN summer forecast, panelists predicted the Suns to finish as the second worst team in the Western Conference with a 27-55 win-loss record.
Acquiring Kemba Walker or Damian Lillard will give the Suns a legitimate NBA superstar who can form an explosive backcourt duo with the face of the franchise, Devin Booker. Since the start of the 2018 NBA offseason, Walker and Lillard have been frequently mentioned in various NBA trade rumors. However, it is highly likely that both superstars will be on their current teams when the 2018-19 NBA season officially starts.
Of all the Suns’ three rumored trade targets, Terry Rozier will be the most interesting acquisition. When Kyrie Irving went down with a season-ending injury, Rozier showed the league that he’s ready for a starting role. Rozier is a much cheaper trade target than Walker and Lillard, and he fits well with the timeline of Devin Booker, DeAndre Ayton, and Josh Jackson.
The Suns may have failed to acquire Lillard, Walker, and Rozier, but according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, they will continue to search for a starting-level point guard before the regular season.