Suns to acquire Korver, trade Jackson and Melton to Grizzlies

Jul 3, 2019, 1:32 PM | Updated: Jul 7, 2019, 8:35 pm
(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)...
(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
(AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

The cleansing and purging of former Phoenix Suns general manager Ryan McDonough’s mistakes continued Wednesday.

Phoenix traded Josh Jackson, De’Anthony Melton and two draft picks to the Memphis Grizzlies for veteran shooter Kyle Korver and second-year point guard Jevon Carter, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The picks traded are the 2020 second-rounder and a conditional 2021 second-rounder.

John Gambadoro of 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station reports there’s a strong chance Phoenix buys out Korver’s contract.

The Suns have agreed to a three-year, $51 million deal for point guard Ricky Rubio, leaving them short of the cap space required to fit Rubio’s contract on the books for next season. Jackson’s 2019-20 salary of $7 million comes off the books, now leaving the Suns enough room to add Rubio.

Korver, 38, could provide a veteran presence and a bench shooter. Last season in 54 games with the Utah Jazz, he averaged 9.1 points and hit 38% from three-point range. Carter appeared in 39 games as a rookie and shot 30%, averaging 4.4 points and 1.8 assists per game.

The decision to move on from Jackson followed multiple off-court incidents.

This offseason, he was arrested and charged with resisting arrest and escape while attending a music festival in Florida on May 10. It’s also been learned he has been accused in Maricopa County Family Court of exposing his 4-month-old child to marijuana, according to court documents.

During the 2018-19 season, Jackson also skipped a scheduled public appearance at a local grocery store and was fined by the team.

The 22-year-old Jackson has also been a disappointment on the hardwood as a top-5 pick in the 2017 draft.

As a rookie, Jackson started alongside T.J. Warren and Devin Booker on the wing to start the season, defending power forwards on some nights before his rookie year — and the Suns’ season — changed abruptly with the firing of head coach Earl Watson and promotion of interim Jay Triano three games into the year.

Jackson was benched in early January by Triano and according to the interim coach responded well after an honest talk between coach and player. Over the 77 games Jackson played as a rookie, which included 37 starts, he averaged 13.1 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game on 41.7% shooting from the field. In a closely-monitored department given his outlook as a draft prospect, Jackson shot 26.3% from 3-point range on 2.8 attempts a game.

In year two, the hope was Jackson would settle in a bit more as a sophomore and play less erratically under another new head coach, Igor Kokoskov. The opposite happened, as Jackson was one of the team’s worst players.

Jackson’s decision-making as a ball-handler never improved and the same went for his defense. His numbers were similar, with 41.3% shooting and averages of 11.5 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game.

One notable improvement was as a three-point shooter. Jackson shot 32.4% on 2.8 attempts a night, which included an encouraging 38% number after the All-Star break.

With two years left on Jackson’s four-year rookie deal, Phoenix had picked up the $7 million on his contract for the 2019-20 season last summer. He also had a $8.9 million team option for 2020-21 they would have been forced to exercise by the start of this coming season.

Melton appeared in 54 games as a rookie. The 21-year-old averaged 5.0 points and 3.2 assists to go with 1.4 steals per game.


Comment guidelines: No name-calling, personal attacks, profanity, or insults. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate comments by reporting abuse.
comments powered by Disqus

Phoenix Suns

Atlanta Hawks guard Dejounte Murray (5) dunks over Phoenix Suns guard Chris Paul during the first h...
Kellan Olson

Phoenix Suns start slow, fail to recover in blowout home loss to Hawks

The Phoenix Suns didn't have the same type of energy they've shown the last couple of weeks and it was the wrong night for that to happen.
1 day ago
Devin Booker #1 of the Phoenix Suns watches from the bench during the second half of the NBA game a...
Arizona Sports

Suns’ Devin Booker could return Tuesday vs. Nets, ESPN’s Wojnarowski reports

Suns star Devin Booker may return Tuesday night at the Brooklyn Nets, according to ESPN insider Adrian Wojnarowski.
1 day ago
Gary Trent Jr. #33 of the Toronto Raptors defends Saben Lee #38 of the Phoenix Suns during the game...
Arizona Sports

Suns sign Saben Lee to 2-way deal, release Duane Washington Jr.

The Suns opted for a true point guard in giving Saben Lee a two-way contract by waiving Duane Washington Jr.
1 day ago
Devin Booker #1 of the Phoenix Suns watches from the bench during the first half of the NBA game ag...
Arizona Sports

Devin Booker ’roundin’ 3rd’ in return from his groin injury

The Suns said Wednesday, the date of Devin Booker's second reevaluation, that he will be considered for a return each game day.
1 day ago
Phoenix Suns guard Saben Lee, left, drives ahead of Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant, right, in th...
Arizona Sports

Suns allow PG Saben Lee’s contract to expire

The Phoenix Suns allowed point guard Saben Lee's second 10-day contract to expire to keep a roster slot open as the NBA trade deadline looms.
2 days ago
Phoenix Suns forward Mikal Bridges, left, talks to Toronto Raptors guard Fred VanVleet (23) during ...
Kellan Olson

Phoenix Suns get clutch with Mikal Bridges to beat Raptors

The Phoenix Suns got back to winning in clutch time and the recent terrific play from Mikal Bridges continued.
3 days ago
Suns to acquire Korver, trade Jackson and Melton to Grizzlies