As they continue to seek out a viable trade involving disgruntled point guard Eric Bledsoe, the Suns are exploring ways to include Tyson Chandler in the same deal, according to Marc Stein of The New York Times (via Twitter).
Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders first reported earlier this week that the Suns appeared to be looking for deals involving Chandler. Kyler, who noted that both Chandler and Bledsoe were favorites of former head coach Earl Watson, wrote in his report that the “ideal scenario” for Phoenix would be to move the duo in the same trade.
Taking into account the stage the Suns are at in their rebuilding phase, it certainly makes sense to explore trading Chandler — at 35 years old, he seems unlikely to be part of the next contending team in Phoenix.
Still, it may be tricky for the Suns to attach Chandler to Bledsoe in a single trade. The two players are earning a combined $27.5MM this season, and most of Phoenix’s potential trade partners will have little interest in taking on extra money in a deal. That would mean finding a Bledsoe suitor with at least $27.5MM in salaries of their own to trade back to the Suns.
The Bucks, frequently cited as a team with interest in Bledsoe, may be the most logical match for a deal involving both players. Possible trade candidates on their roster include John Henson ($11.4MM), Mirza Teletovic ($10MM), Matthew Dellavedova ($9.6MM), and possibly even Greg Monroe ($17.9MM), so they could potentially figure out a package that lands them both Bledsoe and Chandler without pushing them into luxury tax territory. It’s not clear if the two teams are exploring that scenario though.
Like Bledsoe, Chandler has one additional guaranteed year on his contract beyond 2017/18. Both players will come off the books in the summer of 2019.