That crowded backcourt the Phoenix Suns had? Yeah, it just got a little bit more crowded.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, the Phoenix Suns have agreed to a sign-and-trade bringing Isaiah Thomas to the Valley of the Sun on a four-year, $27 million contract:
Suns and Kings are finalizing a sign-and-trade deal on a four-year, $27M contract for Isaiah Thomas, league sources tell Yahoo Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 11, 2014
According to Ken Berger of CBS Sports, the Sacramento Kings will receive a $7 million trade exception and the draft rights to Alex Oriakhi. Last season with the Kings, Thomas averaged 20.3 points and 6.3 assists per game while shooting 45 percent from the field, but Thomas and Sacramento had run their course together. Nabbing Thomas for just under $7 million per year is a steal considering his market value.
As of right now, the Suns intend to use Thomas as a sixth man off the bench behind Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe, the dazzling starting backcourt that took the league by storm last season in the games they were healthy together. But you have to wonder about Bledsoe’s (and perhaps even Dragic’s) future in Phoenix since Thomas seems a tad overqualified for the role of sixth man.
The Suns front-loaded the offer sheet with a starting salary of $7.2 million for Thomas and it went down from there, source says. — Ken Berger (@KBergCBS) July 11, 2014
Bledsoe was limited to 43 games last season due to a meniscus injury, the second one in his right knee in the last three years. With growing concerns about his health mirroring his vast potential as a future breakout star, the Suns very well could use Bledsoe in a trade package for Kevin Love. Sending Bledsoe away for anything less might anger quite a few fans after he averaged 17.7 points, 5.5 assists and 4.7 rebounds per game this season.
Dragic was the team catalyst, especially with Bledsoe out for extended time, averaging 20.3 points and 5.9 assists per game and shooting 50.5 percent from the floor and 40.8 percent from three-point range. Considering he won the NBA’s Most Improved Player of the Year Award and was a Third Team All-NBA player this season, trading him would recall the nasty taste still left in some fans’ mouths after the Suns traded Dragic to the Houston Rockets for Aaron Brooks back in 2011.
If the Suns truly do intend to keep Dragic, Bledsoe AND Thomas, Phoenix will boast the league’s deepest and most dynamic backcourt. General manager Ryan McDonough has truly worked his magic once again the get Thomas at such a bargain price, and for so little in return to Sacramento, but you have to wonder if there’s another move coming now. Keep in mind, the last time management said they intended to pair Dragic and Bledsoe together, we were cautious to believe them…and that worked out pretty well.