Contributing Writer: @NotRyanMcD
Disclaimer: I, @AZSportsZone for one, do not wish to engage in any Ayton trade talk this early. @NotRyanMcD’s brave soul decided to throw some trade ideas out there during the Suns Twitter Civil War. Take up all of your complaints with him, please and thank you.
Hello Valley People,
Excuse the hastily thrown together nature of this article, but with the Ayton wars encompassing #SunsTwitter currently, I thought this would be the perfect time to bring up some potential trade ideas I had rolling around in my head.
Before delving into these, keep in mind, I don’t think any of us have any idea what kind of value Ayton has right now. And, if you’re like me, you don’t have a firm grasp on how other teams value their own guys, including the ones that will be in these trade ideas. Now, I could have gone undercover on twitter and attempted to get responses from opposing fan bases for what they’d give up for Ayton, but I feel like that would have been a futile exercise.
Also keep in mind, I don’t necessarily want to trade Ayton, but I do want this Suns team to be the best it can be, as quickly as possible, and I do want them to take advantage of whatever value he has left, in case it comes tumbling down in the coming months. That said, my preferred scenario would be that he quickly begins to look like the player we saw last season after he came back from suspension. Granted, it would be best if he looked even better than that, but I’d probably settle for last season’s Ayton.
So, without further ado here are some Ayton trade ideas:
The Suns could definitely use another good scoring point guard, particularly for when the CP3 era comes to and end, and while Cameron Payne has certainly served admirably so far, Sexton would be a significant upgrade for the bench firepower (and perhaps a future starter). The Cavs have Darius Garland to groom, and no real “star upside” big, so perhaps this move makes sense for both sides. Maybe. This is selling low on Ayton, but, there’s a reason his stock seems to be low right now. Nance is a nice addition to take over minutes at C for Ayton, but wouldn’t demand as many, and would enable Saric to get more burn that he very much deserves.
I feel a bit bad including Nader in many of these, the poor guy hasn’t done anything wrong, but he’s the only contract it makes sense for the Suns to send alongside Ayton to make salaries match better. Anyway, this is an interesting one. Jarrett Allen doesn’t really seem like he’ll be a star in the future, but he is already a solid big man with room to improve. Landry Shamet is someone @maxmcc11 , as well as some more of you, has lusted after for awhile. He hasn’t shown too terribly much, but he has talent. Prince is just there to match salary, but he wouldn’t be a bad piece off the bench in this season dealing with Covid when depth is king.
This one is pretty fun. It gets the Suns Capela, a guy many of the Phoenix faithful wanted to sign that summer Ayton was drafted (meditates for a moment imagining a world where the Suns took Luka and signed Capela…). He would immediately be able to step in as a good starting center, and the Suns would be able to add even more firepower off the bench in Huerter. And a yummy yummy future 1st (granted, it’s likely to become two 2nds).
What do we have here? Oh, it’s another Hawks idea. This was one I was tossing around in my head last night (as @theIVpointplay from the DMs he received from me at 4am EST) , and I also saw @protectedpick mention it today. I’m not sure how this would go. I suppose Collins and Capela would immediately becomes the Suns starting 4 and 5, with Jae and Cam Johnson and Saric off the bench behind them. I think this deal would clearly make the Suns better, even if Ayton has a higher ceiling than either of those guys have. Collins can score in all sorts of ways, and step our behind the arc, and Capela can defend his butt off and throw it down strong. I would not be unhappy about this one.
Here is one I saw produce some not great responses when @protectedpick posted earlier today. I saw some responses about how Richaun is currently the anchor of the leagues worst defense. Then someone else pointed out that the Suns defense is actually worse than the Kings defense when Ayton is on the court? Despite Ayton fairly clearly playing pretty decent defense this season so far? In any case, we all like Rich Homie. And this would give us TWO guys with some form of the nickname Homie on the team. How could we not? Oh, and Marvin Bagley. Though with how Marvin’s dad has been acting up recently, I’m not sure that’s a circus Monty wants. But Marvin IS a guy with connections to the Valley…
I have been hyping up a trade for Tomas and Lauri for quite some time, so this one making it onto the list might not surprise some of the few of you that pay any attention at all to any of the stupid things I say. Let me point out that I have ZERO idea whether Lauri still has one foot out the door in Chicago like he seemed to last season, or even if he would be a good idea to play at center and have him as the anchor of your defense. Some seem to think that’s a poor idea. I tend to think that him as the starting Center would make the Suns offense so ridiculous that it wouldn’t even really matter, but then again, I’m kind of dumb. Also, Sato. Sato is fun. It sure would be great to have had him these last two games when Cam Payne wasn’t available.
Last but not least, a trade idea inspired by Josh Eberly (his was only for Wendell and Garrett freaking Temple, though…), the only Canadian I trust besides my wife who is a dual citizen. Just kidding. Canadians are fine. They’re generally nice, and they’re smart and decided everyone should have healthcare, like we should here in the US. Okay, the Quebecois are kind of sketchy, yeah. This isn’t France. Get over yourselves. Anyway, would the Bulls even go for this? I think this makes sense for both sides. And the Suns kind of get to figure out who works better at starting center, Lauri or Wendell. This, along with the Capela/Collins one, is probably best case scenario at this point. Bulls get a high end prospect who seems to need a change of scenery, and they give back a couple of not quite as high end prospects, one of which is a touch further along in his development.
I have no idea whether anything will happen like this in the near future, but if it does, I’d imagine that deals like this are the kind you can probably expect. Solid players who can contribute immediately, but no real “star”.
Okay, guys and gals. That’s all for me. Feel free to let me know what you think of these deals. I know they are kind of all over the place, but we just simply do not have any idea what Ayton’s current value is.