EMPIRE OF THE SUNS

Devin Booker leaving D-Lo superteam chatter to media; focused on Suns

Feb 7, 2020, 12:26 PM
Pro Basketball Players D'Angelo Russell and Devin Booker visit Infinity Ward for a "Call of Duty: I...
Pro Basketball Players D'Angelo Russell and Devin Booker visit Infinity Ward for a "Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare Continuum DLC" livestream on April 18, 2017 in Woodland Hills, California. (Photo by Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for Activision)
(Photo by Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for Activision)

PHOENIX — Devin Booker is going to have trade speculation follow him as long as his current situation doesn’t drastically change. He is simply too good of a player in too bad of an organization to have anything otherwise come about.

On top of that, two of his best friends, Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell, just teamed up in Minnesota. The chatter linking those three together as the league’s next “superteam” (if you want to call it that) hasn’t stopped the past 18 months and it never will.

It didn’t help matters that Russell made sure to tell a media outlet that this is a thing.

“We gotta do this again, when we’re all on the same team,” Russell told SLAM Magazine of the future this past offseason. “Nah, don’t cut it. Y’all got it on footage. When we’re all on the same team — I ain’t gonna tell you which team because I don’t know — we’re gonna do this again.”

With the Timberwolves acquiring Russell before Thursday’s trade deadline, Booker was naturally asked for his thoughts on the move.

“I’m proud of him man,” Booker said after Friday’s shootaround. “Karl and D’Angelo together — I’m happy for those guys. Obviously two of my closest friends that I talk to a lot.”

Trade speculation followed Russell due to the nature of him being signed and traded for by the Golden State Warriors this offseason. There were reports the Warriors got Russell as more of an asset they could move later, which made sense with Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson on the roster. Turns out, that was founded in truth when he was traded Thursday for Andrew Wiggins and multiple draft picks.

Booker alluded to that when wishing his friend well.

“I’m happy that he’s in a home now,” Booker said. “I feel like he’s in a place where he’s going to stay. He doesn’t have to worry about where his next city is so he has a place that wants him very bad and is going to use him to the best of his ability.”

As far as that persistent, probably-agitating-by-now buzzing that won’t go away, Booker isn’t worried about it.

“There’s always going to be outside noise, but I leave that to you guys,” Booker said, referring to the media.

Not to play the “don’t blame the media” card here — the media does bring up the subject a fair bit — a lot of that noise is coming from and being produced by fans if you look at just one writer’s Twitter mentions.

Thus, it’s here to stay. But Booker’s head coach Monty Williams is still confounded by it.

“I think it’s somewhat disrespectful to Devin,” Williams said. “Those questions are asked because everybody is assuming that he feels a certain way that he hasn’t even talked about or brought up.”

And with Booker never even coming close to suggesting he wants to leave Phoenix or team up with his pals, Williams fails to see the logic of why it’s brought up at all.

“So why does everybody keep talking about it?” Williams asked. “I bet he gets tired of it because it puts him in a conversation that he’s gone out of his way to dispel.”

I’m sure Booker and Williams are used to it by now, but if they aren’t, they better get comfortable. It’s, unfortunately, here to stay and a “part of the business” as so many players and coaches say around this time of year.

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