It’s been a busy, heavily criticized summer for the Phoenix Suns, but what did the 2019 NBA offseason tell us about their upcoming season?
The Phoenix Suns have had quite the busy summer. Between three draft-night trades, another trade in free agency, two new players being signed and another re-signed, general manager James Jones has executed his full-on roster reconstruction in a swift and deliberate manner.
Gone are T.J. Warren and Josh Jackson in salary dumps. Gone are De’Anthony Melton, Richaun Holmes, Troy Daniels, George King, Jimmy Fredette and most likely, Dragan Bender. Gone are the No. 6 and No. 32 overall picks in the 2019 NBA Draft, gone is the 2020 Milwaukee Bucks first-rounder and gone are two future second round selections.
In their place, the Suns added Cameron Johnson (No. 11) and Ty Jerome (No. 24) in the draft, traded for Dario Saric and Aron Baynes on draft night, picked up Jevon Carter in the Jackson salary dump, signed Ricky Rubio and Frank Kaminsky in free agency and agreed to re-sign Kelly Oubre Jr. to a two-year deal.
After years of asset accumulation under GM Ryan McDonough, all those stockpiled picks eventually amounted to little other than draft busts and unfulfilled potential. The big blockbuster trade never came, the game-changing free agent never even looked Phoenix’s way, and the Suns are still rebuilding around young franchise cornerstones in Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton.
The question is, with such major roster upheaval, how did Phoenix actually fare this offseason? It’s easy to pick on the Suns’ every move, but their intricate maneuvering this summer deserves a deeper look. Here are the three biggest takeaways from the 2019 NBA offseason for an organization that desperately needs to get its rebuild off the ground in 2019-20.