The Phoenix Suns completed a deal with the Los Angeles Clippers earlier this off-season that landed them talented young point guard, Eric Bledsoe. The Suns are still several pieces away from being one of the better teams in the NBA, but adding Bledsoe is a good move for the teams future under new general manager Ryan McDonough.
However, another part of the trade for Bledsoe was that the Suns acquired forward Caron Butler. Along with Butler came the $8 million that he’s due this season. However, the Suns and McDonough have showed that they mean business with this rebuilding/reclamation project in Phoenix as they traded Butler on Thursday of this week.
In the trade that sends Butler to the Milwaukee Bucks, the Suns are getting Ish Smith and Slava Kravstov in return, neither of which figures to be a key contributor now or in the future for Phoenix. However, it’s not the players that Phoenix got in return that makes this trade a great move for their franchise.
The Suns were being strangled by the salary cap as a result of several bad decisions and long-term signings that were made over the past few years. Now McDonough is left to pick up the pieces and try to rebuild the best he can.
The best way for McDonough to try and rebuild is to try and create as much cap-room as possible and to acquire young assets that could potentially be used in a trade to acquire an impact player. The Butler trade does both of those things for this team, even if the young players they got in return aren’t of the highest quality.
Ultimately, it seems like McDonough has a firm grasp on what the Suns need to do. He’s already reshaping this team and building them in the image of other successful small-market franchises. The 2013-2014 season may not be easy to endure for Suns fans, but it seems that they are in good hands going forward.