The Phoenix Suns didn’t blow up the trade deadline this season like they did last year, but the end result was just as satisfying.
Phoenix managed to trade disgruntled forward Markieff Morris to the Washington Wizards for Kris Humphries, DeJuan Blair and a protected 2016 first-round pick.
“I’ve always been a Humphries fan,” ESPN NBA analyst Jon Barry said on Doug and Wolf on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Friday morning. “He can face-up and shoot the ball a little bit so he doesn’t kill you on spacing, terrific rebounder, good defender. I wouldn’t think that Blair sticks around. Nonetheless, I like the deal a lot, it’s addition by subtraction really, obviously the guy was clearly unhappy going back to the summer, and it’s a great move.”
Currently tied for the third-worst record in the league at 14-40, the Suns could secure a top-three pick in the upcoming draft. After dealing the Los Angeles Lakers’ first-round pick in the Brandon Knight trade a year ago, re-acquiring another first-round pick for Morris is exceptional.
“I think they’ve got to be extremely happy,” Barry said. “Washington, right now if the season were to end, you’d get a No. 12 pick potentially, so root for them to stay out of the playoffs and out of the top-nine. You can potentially get a 10th, 11th or 12th pick.”
While the Suns would enjoy having two lottery picks in the draft, the Wizards (24-28, tenth in the East) hope acquiring Morris will catapult the team back into playoff contention.
“I think it’s a great move for them, I really do. I think it’s a good move for both teams, it’s a rarity that trades are perfect for both teams. If this guy regains the form he had last year, he’s perfect for them. An uptempo team with John Wall and Bradley Beal, two great guards, one of the top guard combos in the NBA and Markieff, great athlete can run with them, they can play smaller. I love the deal, provided he gets back to playing the way he’s capable of playing.”
Morris will make his return to Phoenix on April 1.