PHOENIX SUNS

Reports: Suns linked to trade market of Rockets’ Jae’Sean Tate

Jan 31, 2024, 1:21 PM | Updated: 1:25 pm

Jae'Sean Tate dribbles past Mikal Bridges...

Jae'Sean Tate #8 of the Houston Rockets controls the ball head of Mikal Bridges #1 of the Brooklyn Nets during the first half at Toyota Center on January 03, 2024 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

(Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

Houston Rockets wing Jae’Sean Tate is reportedly “attracting interest” from the Phoenix Suns and Boston Celtics, reports The Athletic’s Shams Charania.

Charania touched on Houston’s willingness to move the reserve wing in a piece framing the team’s interest in pushing to make the playoffs in head coach Ime Udoka’s first season on the job.

It’s the second link of Tate to Phoenix after Yahoo! Sports’ Jake Fischer noted the Suns are looking at Tate and Brooklyn Nets forward Royce O’Neale.

Tate’s $6.5 million salary lines up with contracts the Suns could swap for, and they notably also have a $6.5 million trade exception to maneuver from the Cam Payne deal this offseason. That must be used by the Feb. 8 trade deadline unless the unlikely happens and Phoenix can get under the second tax apron.

Tate has played 43 games with nine starts. He’s averaging 4.7 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 18.4 minutes per game.

At 6-foot-4 and 230 pounds, he’s an energy wing who can muck up games with his defensive aggressiveness. While he shoots 47.6% from the field, his career history as a 30.5% three-point shooter doesn’t lend much evidence that he would be a major upgrade or provide more offensive pop than current Suns defensive ace Josh Okogie.

Tate has a $7.1 million team option for next year.

O’Neale and his expiring $9.5 million have been floated by ESPN insider Bobby Marks as a strong fit for Phoenix considering his defensive reputation and 36.2% three-point shooting.

His contract size about maxes out in terms of what Phoenix can realistically acquire considering their assets end with second-round picks, the little-used Nassir Little and Grayson Allen, who has been a key rotation player that would be hard to see moved by the deadline despite his expiring deal.

TNT’s Chris Haynes earlier in January reported the Suns were targeting wings over point guards and bigs.

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