PHOENIX SUNS

Phoenix Suns graded as winners of Trevor Ariza trade with Wizards

Dec 17, 2018, 5:02 PM | Updated: 10:03 pm
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)...
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The dust has finally settled and Trevor Ariza is no longer a member of the Phoenix Suns.

The forward on Monday was officially traded to the Washington Wizards in exchange for forward Kelly Oubre Jr. and guard Austin Rivers.

NBA pundits have already broken down the trade and there’s a positive outlook for the Suns.

Several outlets have graded the Suns as the winner of the trade despite none of the players having played a game with their new teams.

See what grades the Suns and their counterpart, the Wizards, have received for the trade:

ESPN

Suns: B- | Wizards: D+

The Suns easily won the Ariza trade in the eyes of ESPN’s Kevin Pelton.

Yes, the goal was to get a playmaking guard and a draft asset for Ariza, but Oubre has more value than any of the players the Suns were set to receive in the three-way trade that fell through Friday night.

It’s possible the Suns could even flip Oubre before the February trade deadline considering the team’s depth at the wing position and his expiring contract.

Rivers isn’t a true point guard, so it remains to be seen how the Suns will use him moving forward.

As for the Wizards, it’s a “desperation move for a floundering team with a president whose job might or might not be in jeopardy.”

CBS Sports

Suns B+ | Wizards B

Writer Chris Bengel noted how the Suns’ poor start to the season forced their hand in trading away a veteran with an expiring contract, like Ariza.

The addition of Oubre, the 23-year-old wing player averaging 13 points per game this season, gives the Suns more youth and options moving forward.

From the story:

The main attraction of this deal has to be acquiring a player of Oubre’s caliber. The 2015 first-round pick is set to become a restricted free agent in 2019, which is most likely why the Wizards shipped him out of town. With a young team like the Suns, they’re surveying their young assets in an attempt to figure out who could be a part of their long-term future.

Washington also received high marks for acquiring Ariza.

His defensive prowess on a team that allows 117.2 points per game will certainly help, as will his 37 percent mark from the 3-point line. The Wizards have shot just 27.8 percent this season from beyond the arc.

Sports Illustrated

Suns: C+ | Wizards: D+

Writer Rohan Nadkarni was skeptical the best the Suns could have got for Ariza was the combination of Oubre and Rivers.

Ariza was the “hottest name on the trade market at the time of this deal” and the fact they added another wing player and not a true point guard to a team stacked with wings doesn’t really fill the Suns’ biggest holes.

SI calls the trade “hair-pulling levels of infuriating” from the Suns’ perspective because of that.

The Suns shouldn’t have been in a rush to trade Ariza, especially without a future first round pick or young point guard on the table.

There was no positive outlook for the Wizards, however:

But for the Wizards to trade a young player in Oubre for someone who is essentially a rental (Ariza is on a one-year deal) is monumentally short-sighted. Ariza does not change Washington’s ceiling whatsoever. The Wiz are still comfortably behind the Raptors, Bucks, Sixers, Celtics and Pacers in the East. This trade does nothing for their big-picture outlook, other than giving them a better chance of finishing as a bottom-three seed in the playoff bracket. That’s worth giving up on Oubre for? He’s certainly a flawed player, but at least bring him to restricted free agency and see what happens.

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