The other shoe finally dropped as we passed the 2 p.m. PT deadline for roster trimming.
Once Jamal Crawford was signed to a one-year contract on a veteran’s minimum, we knew three players were on their way out. We now know via The Athletic’s Shams Charania that Darrell Arthur, who’s Disabled Player Exception must have been declined, and Shaquille Harrison were waived. In addition, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted a little earlier that Davon Reed might be on his way out through trade.
The Suns are still working on trade scenarios, but plan to either trade or waive guard Davon Reed today, league sources tell ESPN. They'll need to move out three players, including Reed, to get to 15 for opening night.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 15, 2018
Arthur was a foregone conclusion to be released after he wasn’t around the team all offseason, and it was initially reported he would be bought out shortly after July’s trade involving Jared Dudley.
Meanwhile, Harrison and Reed had subpar performances in preseason following strong Las Vegas Summer League showings. Both were only kept around following the Summer Suns’ impressive play.
Harrison could still be brought back on a two-way contract if he clears waivers, but I would doubt he does, because all he’s missing is a consistent offensive game. The defense, especially on-ball peskiness, is there in spades for Harrison. He needs to land in a development-focused place like Miami, where Derrick Jones Jr. did following his release to make room for Mike James early last season.
Reed was the No. 32 pick in the 2017 Draft. Chosen ahead of names like Jordan Bell and Semi Ojeleye, Reed was projected to fill a 3-and-D role but it never came to fruition following another knee injury (torn meniscus) during offseason team workouts.
The Suns’ current point-guard rotation, which will include spot minutes for Devin Booker and Jamal Crawford at times, is as follows: Isaiah Canaan, De’Anthony Melton and Elie Okobo. Lacking experience and production, I have to think the Suns are just staying patient until they get closer to February’s trade deadline. Teams will have a better idea if they are buyers or sellers, possibly softening the asking price months down the line.
For now, expect plenty of Booker and Josh Jackson as Phoenix’s primary ball-handlers until another move is made to replace the current Band-Aid.