Have you ever made a joke based on a past reality that at the time made you laugh but as you thought about it more and more you got increasingly sad about what might have been? Yesterday Phoenix Stan created a post asking people to sarcastically come up with a 140 word solution to the Suns title hopes this year. My answer was to go back in time and make the trade that would have sent Amare Stoudemire to the Timberwolves for Kevin Garnett and with that my downward spiral that led to a sleepless night and a very difficult morning began.
Of all the mistakes that the Suns' front office has made (and they've made a few to go with a few things they got right, too) I think this is the one that makes me want to kick myself in the throat - which, believe me, would hurt and be humiliating simultaneously. At the time of the trade talks, the majority of fans and the front office were opposed to this trade. Here we had this promising and raw young talent who had yet to tap into his full potential and we weren't about to trade him for a guy that would be on the backside of his career. We all know the story, we kept Amare and Marion and finished the season with another disappointing playoff exit. The next season we shipped the Matrix out and brought in Shaq while KG went to the Celtics. The result, the C's put up another banner and we had yet another disappointing playoff exit dealt to us by the Spurs.
So what if we had made that trade? What if we brought in KG and substituted him for Amare the last two years? Just imagine a defense that had KG down low, Marion doing his thing and Bell locking guys down. Isn't that a line that more than makes up for Nash's defensive deficiencies? On the offensive end you bring in a guy that doesn't demand shots but who can spread the floor just as well as Amare and who knows how to finish down low, too. You also have Nash who is one of the clutch players in the L. Then imagine the possibilities if the guy formerly known as "the Kid" transforms Boris Diaw a la Kendrick Perkins. Remember, the C's were a little hesitant to let go of Al Jefferson knowing that they'd have to rely more on Perkins. Now look at the beast Garnett has created. What if KG were able to cause Diaw to make half the transformation that Perkins has made? Just imagine the run-n-gun offense anchored by a solid defense. Imagine the intensity level of a Steve Nash and KG both hungry for their first title! Is there any way the Suns don't win the title?
For those of you who like me are ready to throw your head through your monitor, relax - I offer you an alternate version to the story. Remember in Back to the Future II when Biff gets his hands on the "Sports Almanac" from the future? Marty finishes what he goes back in time to do only to return to the future and discover that everything is messed up. Then we fast forward to 2015 when Biff has single-handedly destroyed the city and is knee deep in murder, gambling and cocaine. What if Garnett was never supposed to come to Phoenix? What if we made the trade only to watch him and Nash break down physically while Marion continued to grow more and more frustrated? What if instead of becoming a beast, Diaw collapsed into himself the first time KG got in his face for being soft? So, while it's fun to imagine what might have been, lets just try and focus on the here and now because hey, it could be worse - we could be the Sonics...er...um...well the team that was taken from Seattle anyway.