As Steve Nash's days as a Phoenix Sun appear to be ending, the Suns moved aggressively today to land restricted free agent shooting guard Eric Gordon. After welcoming Gordon to Phoenix with a dinner meeting last night, the Suns and Gordon continued their conversation today, and the Arizona Republic's Paul Coro reports tonight that Gordon has agreed to sign an offer sheet for the maximum amount allowed under CBA rules.
"After visiting the Suns, the impression the organization made on me was incredible," Gordon said in a prepared statement. "Mr. Sarver, Lon Babby, Lance Blanks, the front office staff and Coach Gentry run a first-class organization, and I strongly feel they are the right franchise for me. Phoenix is just where my heart is now."
The maximum offer is believed to be 4 years/$58M, an average salary of $14.5M/year. Gordon's rights are still owned by the New Orleans Hornets
, who acquired him last December in the Chris Paul
trade. Restricted free agent offer sheet signing period doesn't begin until July 11th, so the offer can't be officially extended or matched until then.
Gordon saying, "Phoenix is just where my heart is now" seems to imply that he's sending the Hornets the message that he doesn't want them to match the offer, or that they should explore a sign and trade with the Suns. The Hornets can match anyway, and Gordon can't do anything about it, but teams generally don't want to keep around players who aren't committed to their franchise.
At the very least, the Suns have driven up the price for New Orleans, and will make the Hornets think long and hard about letting the pricey 23-year old Gordon walk and instead going with inexpensive rookie Austin Rivers to grow with acclaimed fellow rookie Anthony Davis.
What do you think, Suns fans? Will Gordon end up on the Phoenix Suns