Marc Stein of ESPN is reporting that there is a “growing expectation” around the NBA that the Phoenix Suns will try to trade point guard Goran Dragic away at some point, in a deal that is similar to the trade they made on Friday evening. The Suns traded Marcin Gortat to the Washington Wizards for Emeka Okafor and a first round pick. There are other pieces in the deal as well, and Ryan Heckman breaks down the trade in his piece right here.
The Suns looking to trade Dragic does make complete sense. They did just acquire young, uber-talented point guard Eric Bledsoe from the Los Angeles Clippers over the offseason, and he needs playing time if he is ever going to develop into the caliber of player he was thought to be coming out of college. The Suns are currently engaging in talks with Bledsoe about a contract extension. Dragic, 27, averaged 14.7 points, 7.4 assists and 3.1 rebounds per game last season with the Suns. He had a player efficiency rating of 17.52, which is slightly above average. Dragic is entering year two of a four-year deal that will pay him $7.5 million per year.
HoopsRumors.com speculates that a “deal similar to the Gortat trade” suggests the Suns will be looking for another first round pick in a potential Dragic deal. For a player like Dragic, the Suns could probably end up receiving a first round pick if they make a trade with a championship contender. He isn’t the type of player that a lottery team would look to acquire to put themselves where no one wants to be — in the middle of the pack in the NBA. The Suns have a lot of draft picks over the next couple of seasons, and if they use them wisely, they could be a very dangerous team moving forward.