Once upon a time, Suns players were dissatisfied with their experiences playing in Phoenix. When those players inevitably left the Valley of the Sun, they went scorched Earth on the organization, severing any relationship with the franchise. It was unlike today’s squad, where everybody is extraordinarily happy with their role on the team.
One of those players who engaged in a very ugly and public divorce was Miami Heat guard Goran Dragic. Three years ago (wow has it been that long?) Dragic requested a trade from Phoenix, declaring that the trust between himself and the organization had eroded.
“I don’t trust them anymore,” Dragic said. “It happens too many times. Two, three times.
”They give promises, OK. It’s hard. But at the same time, I wish them all the best. They were great to me the past five years. I’m always going to have a good memory about Phoenix fans and the city. I just hit that point of my career that it’s better for me and my family to move on.”
Well, he moved on. Shortly after his trade to Miami was completed, Suns GM Ryan McDonough responded to criticism that Phoenix had traded its best player.
“Our response to that, I think, is that Eric Bledsoe and Markieff Morris are still in Phoenix Suns uniforms.”
Write your own jokes.
That was nearly three years ago, though. A lifetime in basketball years. Last week Dragic joined Zach Lowe of ESPN to talk about the Suns’ visit to Miami in November and reconciling with Ryan.
Lowe Post podcast: Goran Dragic on Heat culture, winning EuroBasket, getting traded on a flight, Shaq hijinks with rookies, leaving Phoenix, more: https://t.co/u5lpM2JD1B— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) January 4, 2018
First of all, it was never my intention to leave Phoenix like I did. But it happens. I’m always going to be grateful for this organization. They were the first one to give me an opportunity in the NBA. Ryan is right, at the end of the day it’s only business. This year when we played over there I had a good, long conversation with Ryan and I was pleased that this is finally over.
I wish him all the best. I think Ryan is a good GM. I was happy that we had a good conversation. We talked about the past, about the future. He congratulated me about the EuroBasket. It was great.
That sounds fine I guess. Now if we could stop these sort of things from happening to begin with, we’d really be onto something.
Thanks for reliving that unpleasantness. There was some funny stuff in Lowe’s podcast too, including Shaquille O’Neal bossing around a young Dragic.
I had a lot of things to do. Me and Robin Lopez, we were the rookies. I know I had to bring Krispy Kreme donuts every home game, 24 of those.
It was crazy because at that time we had a lot of veteran players who were really healthy. Steve Nash, Grant Hill, Amar’e. Nobody else was eating those donuts, I think Shaq was the only one, and the coaches.
And then of course his role in the Suns’ pregame introductions.
You know before the games we had those funny things, introductions, like sometimes Shaq was Superman so we had to carry him. I had the right leg. Robby had the right side of his body, Dudley was the left side, and Lou Amundson had the left leg. We’d practice in our locker room before the game.
Lots of other good stuff here. Give it a listen.