It looks as though Deandre Ayton may have reached the end of his time with the Phoenix Suns. And according to Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report, the Dallas Mavericks are one of the favorites to land him should he become available.
The Suns believed Ayton was destined for greatness. Or at least someone in the organization did. They selected the local big man with the first overall pick in what ended up being a loaded draft, passing on the likes of Luka Doncic and Trae Young in the process.
Mavs Could Land Deandre Ayton If He Leaves Phoenix
NBA sources believes the Dallas Mavericks are a ‘likely’ landing spot for Deandre Ayton, per @EricPincus
“The Suns need depth. I can see them getting Tim Hardaway Jr., JaVale [McGee] back, Josh Green and No. 10,” pic.twitter.com/nYozzIn3Y8
— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) May 21, 2023
He’s been solid enough statistically. Ayton has averaged at least 14 points and 10 rebounds in every season of his 5-year career, and he was the starting center on the Suns team that made the NBA Finals a couple of years back.
But his work ethic and commitment to the game has always been in question, despite the fact that Phoenix rewarded him with a $132 million contract that lasts until 2026. His effort was scrutinized during the Suns’ latest playoff run, and it looks as though the team will look to find a trade partner this summer.
In a recent article from Pincus discussing the future of the Mavericks, he says that sources have said that Dallas is interested in Ayton. Pincus goes as far as laying out a potential trade that could work for both teams.
Latest @BleacherReport NBA Insiders Dish On Kyrie Irving's Mavs Future, Plus Potential Star Tradehttps://t.co/5WJHP8mm8Z
— Eric Pincus (@EricPincus) May 21, 2023
The Suns are in desperate need of depth after trading away a handful of contributors in the Kevin Durant deal. Shedding Ayton’s contract and getting some bench pieces would be killing two birds with one stone for Phoenix’s front office, and they could do both with the Mavericks.
Pincus’s idea has Dallas sending Tim Hardaway Jr., Javale McGee, Josh Green, and the 10th overall selection in the upcoming draft. And while it wouldn’t be an ideal return for a former first overall pick, getting the depth and a top-10 pick might be the best that the Suns can get at this point.
The article goes on to describe some of the financial ramifications of trying to acquire Deandre Ayton, as it will take some working of the salary cap to make any trade feasible. One of the big points that Pincus points out is the relationship between Ayton and Doncic, who share an agent.
If a deal like this were to get done, it would likely happen sooner rather than later, as the 2023 Draft is scheduled for June 22nd.
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