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Suns, Timberwolves, and Cavaliers Are Reportedly Pursuing Jimmy Butler

Not so fast on going all-in on the youth movement, Suns?

NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Chicago Bulls Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

According to The Ringer, Phoenix might not be committing to the youth movement around Devin Booker just yet. Along with Minnesota and Cleveland, the Suns have inquired about pulling the trigger on Jimmy Butler to make an immediate playoff run.

When looking at what it would take for Butler to be Valley-bound, expect T.J. Warren, the No. 4 pick, and one of Dragan Bender or Marquese Chriss heading back to Chicago at least.

The question is, though, should the Suns even do this sort of deal anyways?

If owner Robert Sarver is putting some pressure on general manager Ryan McDonough to cash in his assets and improve this team right now, Butler is the star player who fits the mold. And outside of him, there really is no one else worth blowing up an extended rebuild for. Butler, who will be 27 until this fall, fits into the team’s window. As McDonough mentioned Monday morning, if they were to be active and or facilitate a trade, they would look for players in a specific age range.

“Yeah, something we're open to for sure,” McDonough said. “I think if we did facilitate a deal, obviously it would have to make sense for us. I think if we were to slot a player, we’d look for somebody in the range of our core guys from this 19-27, in that range kind of with our teenagers up to Bledsoe’s age. So, we’ll look at all of that. We’ve received a number of calls.

However, the question has to be asked in the Suns’ front office whether substituting Butler for Warren, Bender/Chriss, and picks would move the needle enough in the short and long-term. Golden State isn't going anywhere for awhile, so does this put them in the discussion alongside them?

Simply put, no.

All of the sudden, you would see Phoenix pursuing veterans this offseason to pair alongside Butler, Devin Booker, and Eric Bledsoe. A name such as Paul Millsap stands out, but, again, is it worth the risk?

Trotting out a lineup of Bledsoe, Booker, Butler, Millsap and Bender lets say sounds enticing, sure, but that puts you where exactly in the Western Conference? Maybe the middle of the pack? That’s why in terms of a Butler deal, it’s wise for Phoenix to sit this one out unless they are helping as a third team and collecting young pieces.

A scenario that could work for the Suns while avoiding Butler would be taking on some young prospects from Minnesota like Zach LaVine or Gorgui Dieng, who have made dialogue with Chicago this week.

We don’t know the timetable of when the Suns want to contend, but obviously, keep an eye on them throughout this week heading into Thursday. Whether it’s acquiring a franchise star, trading up or down in the draft, or using their assets to obtain another lottery pick, Phoenix has many avenues they can take to shape their trajectory.


Should the Suns abandon the rebuild for Jimmy Butler?

This poll is closed

  • 18%
    Yes, it’s time to win now
    (295 votes)
  • 81%
    No, Butler doesn’t move the needle in the West
    (1297 votes)
1592 votes total Vote Now

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