The Suns traded a conditional first-round pick for backup big man Brandan Wright in January, but the Goran Dragic and Isaiah Thomas deadline-day trades seemed to represent a different philosophical tack. GM Ryan McDonough told TNT’s David Aldridge recently that there is little use for the team to sacrifice the future for the present, as Aldridge writes in his Morning Tip column for NBA.com.
“I think we’re realistic about where we are in the league, especially in the Western Conference,” McDonough said. “We could have done things to load up. Giving away picks or taking on contracts may have given us a short-term bump but it wouldn’t have helped us toward our goal of building a championship contending team.”
While we wait to see if the organization shifts back toward win-now mode in the summer, here’s more from the Valley of the Sun:
- Dragic expressed regret today for his remarks shortly before the trade deadline in which he said he didn’t trust the Suns front office, notes Jason Lieser of the Palm Beach Post. The new Heat point guard said he felt he was “too harsh” and should have shown more restraint, and he expressed his gratitude toward Suns owner Robert Sarver. McDonough also used the term “harsh” to describe the comments he and president of basketball operations Lon Babby made after the deal that sent Dragic, who has planned to opt out and hit free agency this summer, to Miami.
- Still, Dragic rejects the notion that he’s selfish, as McDonough and Babby seemed to imply he was, according to Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic. “It’s hard, but I know it’s not true,” Dragic said, as Lieser notes in his piece. “That’s their opinion. I cannot do nothing else. Everybody has their own opinon. It’s a, how you say, free country. Everybody can speak freely and it is what it is.”
- The Suns thought after Dragic met with Sarver not long ago that Dragic had committed to staying with them long-term if they traded Thomas, a source tells Aldridge. That predated Dragic’s “harsh” comments prior to the deadline.
- The trade that sent Brandon Knight to the Suns took Knight by surprise and, at first, made him angry, as he tells Aldridge. “Initially, I was,” Knight said. “Initially, after the trade, you’re kind of upset. But for me, I look at the bright side of things. The Suns gave up a lot to get me. So it’s someone that wanted me. A system where I can flourish offensively. And we’ve got a lot of young talent. So I take the bright side of things.”
- Danny Granger and the Suns had discussed the idea of a buyout, but they missed Sunday’s deadline for Granger to hit waivers and remain playoff-eligible for other teams. Still, McDonough told Aldridge on Sunday that Phoenix was “keeping an open mind” regarding the forward’s future with the team.