Following the surprising trade that saw the Suns send Ryan Anderson to Miami for Tyler Johnson and Wayne Ellington, we now know one won’t ever suit up in Phoenix. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Ellington’s agent Mark Bartelstein is working with the Suns on Ellington’s release from Phoenix to join a contending team.
Agent Mark Bartelstein is working with the Suns to waive guard Wayne Ellington and allow him to join a playoff contender, league sources tell ESPN. Ellington is arriving with Tyler Johnson from Miami in the trade for Ryan Anderson.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 6, 2019
Adding Ellington to the list with Tyson Chandler and Austin Rivers, Phoenix is definitely trying to work on rebuilding it’s outside image from a player relations standpoint. Ellington will soon be free to go join teams like the Lakers or 76ers while likely still receiving his full salary.
Allowing Ellington to go for free doesn’t make much sense on the surface, though. After witnessing the Detroit Pistons land Svi Mykhailiuk and a future second-round pick for Reggie Bullock on Tuesday evening, how could Phoenix not net one themselves for Ellington? It’s puzzling, but really not surprising when you see how Vice President of Basketball Operations James Jones has been handling veteran players all season.
In the end, the Suns flipped Ryan Anderson for Tyler Johnson with no draft capital sent back. Now, with Ellington about to walk out the door for nothing, how will they go about their business over the next 24 hours leading into Thursday’s trade deadline?
One way or another, we’ll have the answer soon enough, so stay tuned.