According to this article in the Memphis Commercial Appeal (what a great name for a newspaper!) it was the Memphis Grizzlies that rejected a Suns offer that would have sent Amare Stoudemire in return for Rudy Gay, Hakim Warrick, Mike Conley and a first round pick.
We heard rumors of this deal at the time, but this I believe is the first specific confirmation of the details and that it was the Suns offer that was rejected.
Memphis Coach Hollins had some interesting thoughts on the matter:
He [Hollins] adamantly fought against the three-for-one transaction that the Suns boldly proposed.
"I was definitely against it," Hollins said. "I like Amare Stoudemire. But with what the Grizzlies had to give up, there wouldn't have been anything left for Amare to play with. My questions were would he be happy and would he stay? It wouldn't have been pleasant trying to coach a guy who didn't want to be here.
"Overall, I just didn't think it was a good deal for us. We have a core of young players we're building with. In my mind, you don't do it unless it's a young Shaquille (O'Neal) or Kobe (Bryant) or Lebron James or Tim Duncan or somebody who can carry the game by himself. Those guys are franchise players."
Griz owner Michael Heisley, convinced of the same philosophy, turned down Suns owner Robert Sarver not once but twice. Heisley countered with a package that would have guaranteed Phoenix less talent and more salary-cap relief. But the Suns insisted on a top-dollar talent payout that centered on Gay.
Two things stand out here:
Amare isn't viewed as a franchise player by at least this organization and like we suspected his opt out clause is an impediment to sending him somewhere where he won't be happy.
The deal was offered by Robert Sarver and not Steve Kerr. We heard a few times during the trade deadline discussions that Sarver was taking an unusually active role which of course he and Kerr down-played at the time. This report seems to confirm Sarvers role. I wonder what that bodes for Kerr's future with the organization? Any time your boss steps in and does your job for you it is not a good sign.