Following Friday’s madness where the Memphis Grizzlies seemingly tried to finesse the Suns into taking MarShon Brooks instead of Dillon Brooks in a proposed three-way deal with the Wizards, we have a new trade official just over 12 hours later.
According to Arizona Sports’ John Gambadoro, the Suns received Austin Rivers and Kelly Oubre Jr. in exchange for Ariza. No picks were involved from either side.
Suns sending Ariza to Washington for Oubre and Rivers.— John Gambadoro (@Gambo987) December 15, 2018
Ariza, who was reportedly sent away from the team yesterday as he prepared to move to Washington, wanted a move to Los Angeles, but instead he ends up back where he had his first big success with John Wall. Washington’s General Manager, Ernie Grunfeld, pulled off this panic-esque trade as the Wizards now own a record of 11-18 this season.
For Phoenix, they get back a scoring combo guard in Rivers and a two-way wing with possibly untapped potential in Oubre Jr. Both now former Wizards are on expiring deals, with Oubre Jr. set to become a restricted free agent.
The big acquisition here, in my opinion, is Oubre Jr. Sure, Rivers will help try to buoy an extremely inexperienced point guard rotation, but he’s neither an average defender or perimeter shooter.
It wouldn’t surprise me if De’Anthony Melton continued to start, even when Devin Booker returns to the starting lineup following his hamstring re-aggravation (Booker is questionable for tonight’s game versus Minnesota). Why? Well, Rivers makes more sense trying to solve Phoenix’s bench woes than someone who can fit next to Booker. And Melton is actually hitting his catch-and-shoot opportunities from deep at a higher clip than Rivers too.
Back on Oubre Jr. for a second, though. So far this season, the former Kansas Jayhawk is averaging 12.9 points, 4.4 rebounds, 0.9 steals, and 0.7 blocks on 43.3/31.1/80 shooting splits. However, does Phoenix even want to keep him around past mid-April? It’s an interesting question, and one that could settle itself out before February’s trade deadline.
I wouldn’t be surprised, if the Suns’ latest acquisition plays well, if they made Josh Jackson available soon with the 2020 Bucks pick for their hopeful long term point guard. In the past six months, Phoenix has brought in Mikal Bridges and Oubre Jr.
Don’t expect Rivers or Oubre Jr. to debut tonight, but most likely Monday when the Suns play the Knicks in Madison Square Garden.
Here’s the tentative 10-man rotation:
Second Unit: Melton/Rivers-Crawford-Oubre-Jackson-Holmes
Honestly, that’s not too bad. However, will it help the Suns improve much? Let’s save that judgement until Booker is back, but this deal from Phoenix’s point of view seems rushed after Friday night if they didn’t explore any options outside of Washington.
How do you feel about this trade?
This poll is closed
Good, Suns did well with this haul
Bad, there had to be better options out there