Less than half a calendar year after he helped orchestrate the biggest trade in franchise history, Mat Ishbia and James Jones pull off another one of the biggest trades in franchise history — and maybe the most lopsided in favor of the Phoenix Suns.
I still haven’t been able to get over how funny the whole situation is. The 29-year old Bradley Beal, a three-time All-Star two years removed from back-to-back 30 PPG seasons, ends up getting traded for an all-but-retired Hall of Famer and a bench guard who played possibly the worst playoff minutes in the league last postseason (except for that one game).
Then you factor in Beal’s agent, Mark Bartelstein, who is the father of newly-named Suns CEO Josh Bartelstein. Tie a nice bow on that and it’s got all the makings of a “Succession” plot arc. But we’re not even done yet.
Jordan Goodwin was somehow considered a throw-in to this deal, and I just can’t figure it out from Washington’s point of view for the life of me. Goodwin is good! And he’s only 24 years old on a team-friendly deal!
The 6’3”, 200-pound guard with a 6’10” wingspan is exactly the kind of player I imagined when head coach Frank Vogel talked at his intro presser about wanting to be a scrappy team. Goodwin had two games with at least five steals, which is one more than all Suns returners combined. His wingspan mixed with high motor really make him one of the better point of attack defenders the league has.
He averaged 2.6 steals per 100 possessions while taking care of the ball well; only 57 turnovers in over 1100 minutes (2.95 assist-to-turnover ratio). In seven games as a starter last season, he averaged 12.4 points (42/31/67 shooting), 3.6 rebounds, 5.6 assists, and 2.3 steals per game.
Still only on the books for ~$1.9M this season with a ~$2.1M team option the year after, this is the type of contract the Suns will be seeking out when they’re hard capped by the three superstars like they are. It’s very similar to the two-year deal Ish Wainright signed a year ago, but this was a three-year deal for Goodwin.
I’m flagging it now for us all — Goodwin is the type of player that can develop into being a full-time starting point guard if Vogel wants a distributor in the backcourt in addition to Devin Booker and Beal. That type of look would also free the stars up from having to defend point of attack, as well.
The deal included forward Isaiah Todd, who could assist in filling out the roster for Jones.
ESPN Sources: In addition to Bradley Beal and Jordan Goodwin, the Wizards are including F Isaiah Todd in trade with the Suns. Todd - the 31st pick in 2021 - has mostly played with Wizards' G-League affiliate the past two seasons. His $1.8M contract is guaranteed for 2023-2024.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 19, 2023
The 6’10” Todd adds depth at the four, although he lacks experience. In two season in the NBA he has played a total of 135 minutes and scoring a total of 29 points. He was the 17th overall recruit in 2020, and chose to forgo accepting the chance to play at the University of Michigan to pursue his professional career. He played with the G-League Ignite, where he averaged 12.3 points and 4.9 rebounds.
What a blazing start to the off-season that Ishbia, Jones, and the Suns are off to. There’s still a lot of work to do to fill out the rest of the roster, but if the start is any indication, the cap issues will be nothing more than detour signs on Phoenix’s way to re-tooling what should be a championship-level roster.