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The Phoenix Suns Shouldn’t Even Consider Trading For Jimmy Butler

In this week’s #BSoftheSuns Espo doesn’t want the Butler to do it for or to the Suns

Minnesota Timberwolves v Chicago Bulls Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Butler did it.

As much fun as it would be to use that and a million other bad Butler puns for the next six months, it’s not enough to sway me on the idea of the Phoenix Suns trading for disgruntled Minnesota Timberwolves forward Jimmy Butler.

Look I get it, the argument is that at some point Ryan McDonough and his staff are going to have to push their chips into the center of the table, roll the dice and hope they hit a home run on one of these stars forcing a trade. (Did I mix enough metaphors there for you?)

They sat on the sideline as Boogie Cousins, Paul George, Kyrie Irving, Kawhi Leonard, Demar DeRozan and Blake Griffin all have been traded. Heck, they’ve waiting so patiently to make a move for a star that Butler himself is about to be moved for the second time. The biggest moves they’ve made using their assets were to trade with the Kings to take Marquese Chriss No. 8 in the 2016 draft — the Good Morning Miss Bliss to what we all hoped would be a Saved By The Bell of a move — and trading the Dragic picks for the rights to re-acquire the Lakers 2018 pick from the Sixers and take Mikal Bridges. Not exactly the franchise changing moves everyone has been waiting impatiently for since the Suns tankathon began.

So why not be bold? Why not throw caution to the wind and add Butler to a roster that, based on the moves made this summer, is trying to win sooner rather than later? Let’s start with the obvious. Exactly how many small forwards do the Suns need on one roster?

The move to get Butler most certainly would have to include Josh Jackson which would alleviate some of the congestion but does adding Butler to an already crowded front court of Trevor Ariza, T.J. Warren and the aforementioned Bridges make any sense? I’m all for move fluidity to the Suns offense and a position less approach but the reality is that there are only 48 minutes in a basketball game and only so many ways you can slice them up to get each guy minutes. You didn’t sign Ariza to a $15 million dollar deal to ride more pine than a lumberjack and you most certainly didn’t trade up to get Bridges in order to let someone many called ‘the most NBA ready guy in the draft’ not see the floor either. Butler would simply complicate something that already is complicated.

That’s before you even take into consideration his contract situation. Butler is on an expiring deal. While the thought of having lost at historic levels for the last three seasons only to mortgage some of the fruits of that labor for a chance at the eighth seed in the crowded West this year is tempting, I’ll pass. Butler isn’t the piece that makes you a contender this year, and based on his list of three teams he’s willing to go to and sign an extension with - the Clippers, Nets and Knicks - he’d be a one year rental. If you weren’t willing to make a move for Irving with two years left on his deal at a position you needed help at, why would you bother making the move for Butler now?

Oh, and there is the fact that the Suns front office already passed on the chance to acquire Butler once already when the Bulls dealt him to the Timberwolves. What has changed now outside of more miles on his tires courtesy of Tom Thibadeau?

Where the Suns might be able to be involved in a potential deal is by playing the Steve Nash role. They can help facilitate by passing along a player or draft pick to make things work and in return acquire a point guard, say Patrick Beverley from the Clippers or Spencer Dinwiddie from the Nets, in return for making the deal a little sweeter for Minnesota. (An idea the talented Evan Sidery first brought up via Twitter and I more than happily followed Herm Edwards advice and jumped on the train.)

As fans I get it, we’re all hungry for a star and a chance to turn things around. It’s been far too long since Steve Nash laced it up for the final time and the magic left the organization. We’d all give up almost anything to get back there. But if a deal like this happened all we’ll be saying next Summer when the Suns are left at the altar with no star and less young talent is simply…

The Butler did it.

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