The Phoenix Suns are hoping that Flip Saunders is not a man of his word.
Like everyone else, the Suns are aware that the Minnesota Timberwolves have had a trade agreement involving Kevin Love in place for the better part of the month. Just a day away from being able to deal Love to the Cleveland Cavaliers as part of a three-way trade involving the Philadelphia 76ers, the Wolves received one last offer from the Suns in a final effort to land the All-Star forward.
Phoenix offered star shooting guard Eric Bledsoe as the centerpiece of a sign-and-trade, ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne and Brian Windhorst reported Friday, citing sources.
The ESPN report stated that “talks between the Suns and Bledsoe, who is a restricted free agent, have been fractured for weeks, and the team is now vetting all options. That includes sign-and-trade talks with teams besides the Wolves.”
Bledsoe is a very talented player. He averaged 17.7 points, 5.5 assists and 4.7 rebounds per game last season. However, he’s not a No. 1 option for any team, whether it’s a rebuilding franchise or one planning to compete for a championship. Top pick Andrew Wiggins, whom the T-Wolves are acquiring from the Cavaliers as part of the return package for Love, has a much higher ceiling than Bledsoe and will be under team control at a reasonable cost for several seasons.
The problem for the Suns is that their best trade assets are future first-round picks, and it appears that the Timberwolves are most interested in players who can help them win immediately.