Clearly, the Phoenix Suns are struggling to win games. If you are going to lose, why do it with middle-aged players (by NBA standards) whose frustration level will grow by the week?
The Suns have to consider trading their best players for future assets.
We will discuss each Suns player in a different thread - check on a Jared Dudley trade idea on a different thread today!
Reggie Miller opined the other night that Marcin Gortat would fit well in Boston because they need starting-caliber size in their front court.
John Gambodoro took that a bit further, and suggested rookie C Fab Melo and old man SG Jason Terry might be the return package the Suns could get in this deal. Knowing that Gambo has the Suns owner's ear gives it a little more weight than most random rumors.
Fab Melo (7'0", 255 lbs, 22 years old) was the 22nd pick in the draft this past spring. He was a late bloomer in college on the Syracuse second unit alongside Dion Waiters. He has no offensive game, but is a good defender and shot-blocker. In the D-League, Melo had 23 blocks in two games and has dominated (which cannot be said of the Suns' lottery pick).
Jason Terry is... Jason Terry. You all know who he is.
Marcin Gortat is under contract for another year after this one: $7.25 this year, $7.7 next. After that, he will be 31 years old and wanting $10+ million per year. Any team acquiring Gortat has to consider this demand that will be placed on his next contract.
Jason Terry makes $5 million this year, and is owed $10.7 fully guaranteed millions in 2013-14 and 2014-15. That's three full years for a guy who is already 34 years old.
Fab Melo is on a rookie contract making $1.25 this year and $1.3 next. After that, he has qualifying offers as a restricted free agent for two more seasons.
How would they fit?
Marcin Gortat is much-needed in Boston as a rotation big man with Kevin Garnett, Brandon Bass, Jared Sullinger and basically nobody else. Yes, that includes Fab Melo who was demoted to the D-league as a raw rookie despite Boston's desperate need for size.
Fab Melo would be a project. Probably ahead of Kendall Marshall in terms of development, but not far. Melo would be an upgrade over Luke Zeller, at least.
Jason Terry would take Jared Dudley's role as a wing player expected to make big shots when needed. He would share time with Shannon Brown, Michael Beasley and P.J. Tucker.
What do others say?
1. Would you trade him to Boston for Terry and Fab Melo?
Kris Habbas, BSotS/SB Nation: Despite how he has been playing this season -- with the up-and-down tendencies, Marcin Gortat is still a solid center in this league with a good contract. In that trade scenario the Suns are not getting the proper value back for a young center, a rare commodity in this league. I am all for a Gortat trade and even one to Boston, but they need to show more green in return.
Dave King, BSotS: No way. I really despise Jason Terry as a player, and won't enjoy a single minute he takes the court for the Suns, if this happens. Hate the idea.
Jim Coughenour, BSotS: No. Gortat should have more trade value than that. He is a competent starting center in this league. With Rondo feeding him there's no reason to quash the possibility that Marcin returns to a level of efficient, productive play paralleling his time with Nash. In a similar dynamic to that of Dudley, Gortat's trade value should escalate as teams become more desperate before the deadline, especially if Marcin can continue his recently solid play.
2. If not, for who (on Boston)?
KH: The homerun would be to net Avery Bradley, Fab Melo, and a pick (2014) for a Gortat package. Grabbing a 2014 first round pick is the real win with how good that crop of young talent and Melo is a project for Jermaine O'Neal to work with and groom. There is not much to gain adding the veteran Terry to the mix for the long-term future of the team.
DK: Instead, I would consider acquiring Courtney Lee (over Terry), Jared Sullinger (over Melo) and require the Suns to receive a 2014 first-round pick or Avery Bradley for their troubles. The Suns HAVE to take back a middling contract to make this work in the CBA rules. Lee would be a better fit, despite being owed another year in salary. He fit well with Dragic last year. And the 2014 pick is the gem in the trade.
JC: If we take Terry and Melo/Sullinger, I want Boston's unprotected 2014 pick. If Bradley is included in a package, I may step back from the adamance of demanding the #1, but that deal would be more complicated because of Boston's cap situation. If we take Bradley, would they give us Bass? Another guard (Terry/Lee) seems superfluous at that point. Maybe it makes more sense if Dudley is traded for Williams?
3. Who wins the trade you like best?
KH: This is a win-win for both teams if the Suns get the proposal I suggested above, but if they settle for Terry and Melo for Gortat they will once again be the butt end of front office jokes next season... Again.
DK: If the Suns get Melo/Sullinger, Lee and a 2014 #1/Bradley then this trade is a wash. Maybe a win for the Suns, but not this year in terms of on-court success.
JC: I think another case of Boston now and the Suns later. I still don't think that Boston is a contender after this trade, so it isn't a foudroyant coup for them. As I've mentioned, any trade that makes the Suns better or worse while returning young prospects and/or picks deserves serious consideration. I also think that the Suns want to/need to trade Gortat, so there's that.
Note: we had an 85-message email trail that included Sean Sullivan and Jason Feldman, but I couldn't find where they actually answered the questions posed. So they're out. Sorry guys.
I hate this proposal of Terry and Melo for Marcin Gortat, but if they throw in an unprotected 2014 then I might be able to swallow it.
Frankly, Gortat is not as good of an asset when you consider he needs a new contract really soon.
But, acquiring Jason Terry makes my skin crawl. Kind of like acquiring Sam Cassell and Robert Horry for Charles Barkley...