Report: Suns’ Devin Booker ‘upset’ with team over release of Tyler Ulis

Jul 1, 2018, 11:37 AM | Updated: 11:50 am
(AP Photo/Ralph Freso)...
(AP Photo/Ralph Freso)
(AP Photo/Ralph Freso)

The Phoenix Suns started off free agency in a busy way, announcing they waived point guard Tyler Ulis and signed former Rockets forward Trevor Ariza to a one-year deal.

But according to Yahoo Sports’ Shams Charania, waiving Ulis didn’t exactly sit well with his best friend and star of the team, Devin Booker.

Booker and Ulis’ friendship dates back to middle school, when the two competed in AAU basketball. Eventually, they both landed at Kentucky, where they played together for one season before Booker was drafted 13th overall by the Suns in the 2015 NBA Draft.

Just a year later, Phoenix drafted Ulis 34th overall.

Ulis played in 132 games, making 58 starts for Phoenix over the course of his two seasons in the Valley. He averaged 7.6 points, 4.1 assists and 1.7 rebounds during his stint with the team.

After a standout end to the season in his rookie year, he had high expectations for his second season and failed to meet them. His shooting percentage dropped from 42.1 percent to 38.8 percent, as he was unable to secure the backup point guard spot heading into this upcoming season.

The Suns pushed back the deadline in an attempt to find a trade for the guard, according to 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s John Gambadoro, but were unable to.

Booker is eligible for a maximum extension, which could be worth upwards of $150 million for five years.

Suns general manager Ryan McDonough hinted at Phoenix’s intentions to offer Booker the maximum in February, when he spoke with 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s Doug & Wolf.

“We’re ready for that next step,” McDonough said. “I think Devin in particular is ready for that next step.”

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