The Payton Pritchard dilemma needs to be addressed by the Boston Celtics this offseason.

After flirting with an undersized guard in a backup role, which proved to be a serviceable 3-point shooting threat in 2021 and 2022, the Celtics pushed Pritchard back to the end of Boston’s bench last season, which left the 25-year-old to rummage for minutes all year long. As expected, that didn’t rub Pritchard the right way, sparking speculation from the trade deadline to the end of Boston’s campaign, and rightfully so.

Now, with the NBA draft quickly approaching, and Pritchard understandably seeking a roster spot where he could contribute on a night-to-night basis, one team’s front office is rumored to contain “several supporters” potentially interested in adding the Oregon product: The Phoenix Suns.

“Payton Pritchard, the former first-round pick who fell out of Boston’s rotation, has several supporters in Phoenix’s front office, sources said, and is expected to feature prominently in the NBA’s general trade landscape this summer, when Pritchard becomes extension eligible,” Yahoo Sports’ Jake Fischer wrote on Friday.

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With Phoenix moving on from Chris Paul, an expensive and declining starter at $30.8 million, it’s ideal to take an open-minded approach in order to keep their NBA Finals window open as one of the top contenders in the Western Conference. But will that include pursuing Pritchard?

Here’s a look at Pritchard’s decline in usage over the past three years in Boston:

— 66 games played, 19.2 minutes per game and 6.3 field goal attempts (2020-21, rookie year)
— 71 games, 14.1 minutes and 5.3 field goals (2021-22)
— 48 games, 13.4 minutes and 5.1 field goals (2022-23)

Again, the likely repressed frustration within Pritchard comes as no surprise. Being in the position of an undersized guard who’s also a defensive liability, snagging a payday as quickly as possible is No. 1 on the agenda when in the NBA, and with that being said, Boston isn’t allowing Pritchard to showcase anything.

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With Pritchard’s sample size continuously dying down, so could his chances (easily) at receiving what would be the first payday of his career. Considering the addition of Pritchard isn’t expected to take any sort of toll on any team’s salary cap, perhaps it’s worth taking a flyer on him off the bench come next season, right?

Well, more likely than not, that team won’t be the Celtics.

Featured image via Sam Navarro/USA TODAY Sports Images