This post is not meant to encourage people to jump on the ESPN trade machine and start punching in ridiculous ideas or even great ones that management will probably never see or consider. No, its more of convincing people who think we are over-reacting with all the trade talk. So without further adieu, let me give you my top 10 reasons why we should make a trade:
10. We are dead-last in points allowed per possession. - Since I don't have the latest stats, let me give you the ones as of December 6, 2010. We are allowing teams to shoot 110.1 points per 100 possessions against us. The Clippers, the 2nd-worse defensive team, are allowing teams to shoot 109.8 points per 100 possessions. The Clippers.
9. We are a hodge-podge of young and old players. - Boston. Oklahoma. Chicago. Orlando. San Antonio. Dallas. All of these teams have a core of players (starting five) who are more or less the same age. Teams need to gel together, to grow up together - or at least to be in the same maturity level to know and understand each other better (i.e. Boston during their Championship season, where everyone was willing to sacrifice a bit). Our players? Robin Lopez - 22 years old. (I'm assuming that Frye starts at Power Forward when Robin comes back) Channing Frye - 27 years old. Grant Hill - 38 years old. Jason Richardson - 29 years old. Steve Nash - 36 years old. We have at most, 2 players hitting their prime at the same time, which will never work.
8. We have too much depth. - Remember how they said that there was no such thing as too much depth? Wrong. Our players are not playing well for a very simple reason - they can't stay on the floor long enough to establish a groove. Anyone who has played basketball knows you need some burn before you really feel the game. You put a guy in for 10 minutes and expect him to go all mental on the other team? I'm sorry - that's just not happening.
7. At the quarter point in the season, we currently own the 9th seed, and would be on the wrong end of a tiebreaker if Portland and Phoenix tied for the eight seed. - Yes, it is early in the season - but take this interesting tidbit from NBA.com - "Over the last 10 years, 84 percent of the teams that made the playoffs were in playoff position (the top eight of their conference) after 41 days." We probably won't make the playoffs, and I don't see any harm in shaking the roster up a bit.
6. We need to let players know that this defensive effort is inexcusable. -Nothing says "this is inexcusable" like a trade. When players know that they will be held accountable and will be traded for a lack of effort, then they give their 100%.
5. We have a new CBA coming up. - Yes, a lockout may very well happen, but I have a good feeling that the owners will survive better than the players during the lockout. That being said, I do believe we will see some hard restrictions in the cap. J-Rich's expiring contract is a gold mine for us. A lot of people will be looking to unload all-star talent in lieu of the new CBA and we should take advantage of that. Fact is, J-Rich's contract is more valuable to us that J-Rich, even when he was going on a tear.
4. We owe it to our two favorite veterans, Steve Nash and Grant Hill, to at least give them the OPTION to be on a team who has a chance of winning it all. - Hill is 38. Nash is 36. Hill has maybe 2 years more, at best, and Nash has maybe 3 years. We should at least ask them if they want to be traded and try to get them some success on other teams. God knows, they gave their all to us and it just didn't quite work out.
3. Goran Dragic -We always complain about how Goran Dragic tends to stink it up lately, but what do we expect when we play him so few minutes? Fact is, playing him and Nash together is a bad idea - they are both undersized, and what they bring in offense will be lost in defense. Just as a child develops his intelligence in the first few years of his life, a player also develops his strengths and weaknesses in his first few years in the league. Letting Dragic ride the bench is a bad idea - either trade him for someone who can contribute right away while teams are interested, or trade Nash and make him a starter.
2. Our strategy - Robert Sarver said the plan was to acquire attractive pieces, on good contracts so that we can make a trade to acquire that superstar / all-star player. If that is the case, shouldn't we at least look into bringing our strategy to fruition? I don't suggest just dumping people for anything, but at least actively seek a trade that will make us better. If none comes, fine. But don't tell me we won't even bother to try, when that was the plan all along.
1. Its all about championships - I know a lot of you will disagree with this point, and I probably won't blame you. You say sports is about the excitement of winning, the disappointment that comes with losing, (or some other quote that sounds like it came from "the climb" by Miley Cyrus) but fact of the matter is, we play for Championships. Why then do people watch teams that suck year-in and year-out? Simple. They don't think about just one season - they think about the long-term. That doesn't mean they don't want their team to be champions eventually, or even that they are content with the progress that is being made, but they see that the team has a vision - and they support that vision. We have a vision too (winning a championship), and we should support that by going about it in the best way possible. Our team will not win it all this year. Or as the way the roster is constructed, probably not in the next 4 years either. We should do something about that. Yes, it may backfire on us (I'm looking at your fat contract Hedo) but its still worth the risk to try and pursue that vision. Tell me honestly, if I promised you the Suns would never win a championship during your lifetime, would you still be a fan?