NBA Free Agency 2014: Recapping a Hectic Day

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Dec 13, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Sacramento Kings guard Isaiah Thomas (22) controls the ball in the first quarter against the Phoenix Suns at US Airways Center. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Suns-Kings sign-and-trade

There are teams whose bad luck, mainly injuries, halts their development. The mid-2000s Portland Trail Blazers come to mind in that scenario. Sans injury, that organization has a well-groomed core of Brandon Roy, Lamarcus Aldridge, and Greg Oden. Instead it took years for them to regroup to relevance.

“I feel wanted. That’s all I wanted.” – Isaiah Thomas

The Sacramento Kings? They are the team who isn’t good because of their own ineptness. In their own little world, they’ve signed former Clippers point guard Darren Collison to the full mid-level over the course of three seasons while outcasting Isaiah Thomas because he wasn’t a “true point guard” (hint: Darren Collison isn’t a “true point guard” nor is he better than Thomas).

And instead of the Kings re-signing Thomas to a fair valued deal, the Phoenix Suns became the ultimate representative of “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”, acquiring Thomas in a sign-and-trade worth $27 million over four years while sending the Kings nothing in return. Want to hear a fun stat? How many point guards have averaged 20 points, 6 assists with a PER of 20 in the last 5 seasons? Nine. Know who’s on that list? Thomas. Know who isn’t? Collison.

Now raises the question of why is Phoenix stockpiling point guards. Prior to Thomas’ arrival, the Suns employed Eric Bledsoe (RFA), Goran Dragic, and Tyler Ennis, a 1st-round selection. What I get from their move with IT is they’re 1)  Adding depth behind Dragic and Bledsoe and 2) keeping their options open. Dragic is a free agent next season. If they choose to, the Suns could dangle Dragic in trade talks in order to improve the teams future (Kevin Love maybe?). The same could be done with Bledsoe if he fetches more on the trade market.

It’s Daryl Morey-esque game planning.