The Phoenix Suns have not landed a big-name free agent since Steve Nash in 2004.
Will that change?
Sean Deveney of The Sporting News doesn’t think so in the case of LaMarcus Aldridge, calling the Suns a “long shot” to land the four-time All-Star forward.
“I was surprised, just as a lot of people in Phoenix were, that when (Aldridge) made his list that Phoenix was on there,” Deveney told Doug & Wolf of Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “I think they’re probably a long shot, but there’s no question that they still have young talent. They have a coach that a lot of players like.”
Aldridge averaged 23.4 points and 10.2 rebounds per game last season. The 6-foot-11, 240-pound forward has spent his entire career in Portland, and has only won one playoff series.
The Trail Blazers were eliminated in five games by the Memphis Grizzlies in the first round of the 2015 NBA playoffs.
While the odds of landing a name such as Aldridge or Kevin Love are slim, Deveney said the organization is in good position entering free agency.
“The fact that the Suns are in there, that’s where they want to be,” Deveney said. “They always want to be in with the top free agents, because eventually someone’s going to say yes.”
While 2014-15’s 37 wins appeared to be a step back from their 48 wins the year before, Deveney says Phoenix is still an attractive destination.
“(Phoenix) showed enough promise two years ago, I think, to where players are still willing to give them a listen,” Deveney said. “It’s one of the better living situations. Guys love going to Arizona and then settling down there, so that’s probably a factor.”