Suns May Renounce Elfrid Payton, Alex Len, Others

The Suns are ready to make aggressive moves in free agency, but not without a little house cleaning first, according to Scott Bordow of The Arizona Republic.

Look for Phoenix to maximize its cap room by shedding some unwanted salary, Bordow writes, with free agents Elfrid Payton and Alex Len both likely to be renounced. Payton’s performance was uneven after coming to the Suns in a midseason trade and he carries a $10MM cap hold. Len became expendable with the addition of No. 1 pick Deandre Ayton.

Those moves would give the team about $10MM for the free agent market, but the Suns are thinking bigger. Bordow expects them to cut ties with center Alan Williams, who has a non-guaranteed $5.52MM salary for next season. They may try to re-sign him or trade him to a team that can afford him more easily.

Other non-guaranteed contracts that might get discarded belong to Tyler Ulis ($1.54MM) and Shaquille Harrison ($1.38MM), while Davon Reed has a $1.38MM deal with a $689,212 guarantee. The deadline to decide on Ulis’ deal is tomorrow.

With up to $20MM available to chase free agents, Phoenix will focus on finding a point guard and a power forward who can defend and shoot from the outside.

Bordow lists the Clippers’ Patrick Beverley, the Celtics’ Marcus Smart, the Bulls’ Zach LaVine, the Raptors’ Fred VanVleet and the Jazz’ Dante Exum as potential backcourt targets, while Utah’s Derrick Favors, Houston’s Trevor Ariza or Luc Mbah a Moute, Milwaukee’s Jabari Parker, Indiana’s Thaddeus Young, San Antonio’s Rudy Gay or Philadelphia’s Ersan Ilyasova could fit the four spot. If the Suns find a power forward, Bordow expects them to explore trading either Dragan Bender or Marquese Chriss.

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40 thoughts on “Suns May Renounce Elfrid Payton, Alex Len, Others

  1. SoCalBrave

    I think it’s too early to give up on both Bender and Chriss, but the Suns can’t really afford to keep both of them and develop them properly at the same time. I think Chriss is the surest best, but Bender may have a slightly higher ceiling.

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    • joemoes

      Bender and Chriss seem pretty young. With Booker, Jackson, Ayton, Bridges those two aren’t bad to develop at a 4 you don’t need the 4 to score. go all in Zach Lavine.

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      • Bender and Chriss don’t “seem” to be young – they are young.

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        • joemoes

          Point is getting rid of them is pointless. When they still are developing and shown flashes to be to good

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        • yoyo137

          Lol what do you gain from saying this? You’re right and they’re wrong? Just nitpicking word choice at this point

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          • x%sure

            Nitpicking further, the word “immature” was tiptoed around in the Chriss/Bender discussion.

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      • WillB84

        That’s a terrible plan. Not only does LaVine not fit on the Suns, but he isn’t even that good. He is one of the worst defenders in the league, and he’s a worse playmaker than Booker. He also doesn’t get to the foul line, and he makes a lot of dumb mistakes with the ball in his hands. Most of the Bulls fans I’ve seen on message boards and blogs would rather let him walk and tank another season than pay him anything more than $15-16 million.

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      • Marklee

        Ill tell u the perfect trade team get younger now and perfectly fill holes where they could be a top 3-4 team out west depending on jacksom growth how legit ayton n bridge is also. Keep csp down even cut some for a final superstar piece which id make the final piece klay thompson next summer the youngest of the big 3 w out all those injury dagger !first her the house we csn put on foundation. For klay and possibly another max like Leonard butler or Kat. But thiz year keep bridges Booker jackson ayton okobo ulis chriss and king
        …. Do a 4 team trade i reallly want dejounty murray….1st off hes 6’5 1\2.bare foot so w shoes pushing up near 6’7 w A 6’8 wing span very long lengthy solid PG sho developing his jumper but off chart athletism. Great lateral mpve Might of growm some too w. A 41.5″ verticle besides the 6’8 wing span he had 10.75″ hands too very easy for him to grip ball leads to very tight handles. Already solid defender @ washington he just blew by everyone w his speed size n athletism got to hope w ease. Obv were concern’ as he was just the 29th pick. Major one is beimg. Over 6″5 n 1/2 w a 6’8-6’9 wingspan n weight 170lbs

        :

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        • Marklee

          Watching him last year as he took the starting job put spurs got derrick white another Pg they ised pk 30 on 17 n so on w him already having great chemistry w Chris’s where je gets him going too plis 2 years under pop sure hes a real good defemder vs guards. Still only 21 igor known for helping. Develop guards and there shooting. Al)

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    • Marklee

      Your right what we should do is sign kanter on a 1-2 year deal. He can play 15-20 min back up center also he has much improved his 15 to to 20 ft jumper between that and ayton being able to spread the floor for mid range and 3 pt i think tjey could play 10 to 15 min C and PF…. I mean is kanter just not a bender who has matired and got be%er n stromger2.

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      • Marklee

        Then after we lock up kanter. Keep xhris2 cuz he is perfect size. 6’10. W good lateral auickness speed strenfh2 and one of the best vertices @ 2016 draft 42.5″ also over a 7ft wingspan so real he can play and guard 3s like durant and lebron use him like a green then use. A mix of ulis harrison or knigh. Eith anothwr piece or take patti mills contract to get dejounty murrray who is Also just 21 yr old PG who at 6’5 6 6. And. 6’8 wingspan and 2 yeara of learning defense from popovich. He going into year 3 and his passing and leadership and friend ship as they were roomates too they both worked magic together on the 2016 huskies enough to. Make mu=ray a 1 n done shockingly @ 29 and Chris’s up to 8

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        • Marklee

          I think troy daniels. House and Brandon knight and tAke greens or mills contract up or do 3 or 4 team trade. After we aigne2 kanter. He makes. Alan William who real solid and cheap. Add in bender who only 20 and a 4th pick just 2 years ago.
          Tyson Chandler expire contract plus 13 mill so were up to 22 mill throw in Warren 12.5 for 4 years for a quAlity 20 pt scorer. So that 32.5. And throw in house. W either harrison or ullis and 2-3 2nd rd or even the bucks 1st rd. All our players plus our cap space would Allow us to take on 55 to 60 mill

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          • Marklee

            Like i said throw in the bucks pick and a few 2nd rd picks too. 4 team trade. Philly can get 2 2nd rd picks a champion vet center in chandler which we. Agree to pay 5 million of his 13.25. Give charlotte a 1st n 2nd rd pick. Plus tyler ulis who 22 plus take on batum 24 mill for 2 years. But we get kemba walker gilchrist n kaminsky and doncic from Philly. Also give them knight shaq

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          • Marklee

            Like i said throw in the bucks pick and a few 2nd rd picks too. 4 team trade. Philly can get 2 2nd rd picks a champion vet center in chandler which we. Agree to pay 5 million of his 13.25. Give charlotte a 1st n 2nd rd pick. Plus tyler ulis who 22 plus take on batum 24 mill for 2 years. But we get kemba walker gilchrist n kaminsky send Warren to philly so they send fult to spurs n we can get Murray and a 2nd or 2 back…..really this idea but us giving them gilchrist house williams and a future 1st n 2nd to them plus part of deal we or philly tKe. That 3 39 mill for mills off there books plus tjey get bender m fultz n house. Philly get 2 2nds warren to fill void w legit 20 pt scorer only 24 plus Brandon knight and millz plus shaq. Is worth dumping fultz for 2 prover Pg knight could be better. And millz shoots 3s n playoff m chsmpionship dna plus more draft picks and Warren a better fit for sjsg2 they got docic doing
            Plus another champion experienced center in chandler and alan williams iz a 25 yr old. Enforcer. Who is still se developing but can play C/Pf. To give up a Pg who played 13 games and Pf/C who had to play Sf n only got u 14 ppg. Warren is a true SF who also plays Pf gets u 20 ppg.

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            • Marklee

              Like i said throw in the bucks pick and a few 2nd rd pickspicksi bet thatt blocl buster trade can happen. Swing for fences. Phx. Top 8-10 2019 pick n both 2nd rd picks. Bucks 1st rd and 2020 2nd rd 2021 2nd rd and 2023 lottery protected . charlott would def give kembA for 1 more year up anx kaminsky who perfect ztretch r or 5. That 15 million gone there and gilchrist 2 yr 13 mil per and batum the one they really want gone all that dumped and they get a 1st and 2nd. Pluz shaq or ulis both young n cheap plus Pf alec peters 23 1.2 mill ..
              1.5 mill and. Phily recieves 2 second picks. Brandan knight only 26 and Proven w playoff. Tj warren 20 ppg scorer Sf/Pf. Fits the. Spot they got Saric who more like 6’11. Also 24 same age but he only avg 12.8 then 14.6 be becuz hes a stretch 5 or 4. C/Pf. Starting as there 3- wing / SF. He gets 80% of his stats when either embied or simoms r of court
              Ty warren for dario saric swap would be perfect for both of uz… N he making 4 mill now on 3rd year of rookie deal
              He def gonna ask for 16-20 mill a year when embied already 25-26. and covington gettimg2 14.5-16 mill. And he n simons will be both do be easier paying warren 12.5 mill starting thiz year 18 19 thru next.CBA warren was avg @ best suns just lucked out they signed him b4 e eryone got big money and he had 2 avg @ best 1st 2 years and he signed that 34 games avg 8.65 ppg. Really its suns being joles2 offering 4 yeR. 50 mil to at best at time u figured bust again hoping to salvage a bech guy who.could give u 15 min. Then. In last 132 games he avg 22.9 ppg 6.8 reb. Like where do u find starting SF 24 year old hitting there peak. Hit there best last 50 game year 3 avg 8.5 ppg on 39% come out of all star shooting 52.8 % and. Avg 22.3 to get 8.4 avg up to about 15ppg follow it 19
              6 ppl

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  2. frankm

    Smart would be a great move
    Smart/Okobo
    Booker/Mikal
    Jackson/Warren
    Bender/Chriss
    Ayton/Chandler

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  3. formerlyz

    Smart, Booker, Bridges, Jackson, Ayton with Warren off the bench. If they could add Smart and Beverly, and possibly a veteran wing, I think they could be significantly improved

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  4. hiflew

    I don’t understand why they want a backcourt FA. Getting Brandon Knight back from injury would be like signing a FA that is already paid for. Knight is still young and not a great, but a good PG. As good or better than anyone on that list anyway.

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  5. Z-A

    See they messed up. I would have used that Miami pick to dump Dudley or Chandlers expiring contract.

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    • As painful as Chandler’s contract is, he could be helpful in mentoring his young padawan.

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    • ShortJr

      moving the pick for a top ten pick is a better move then getting rid of the Dudley or Chandler contract. this is the final year for both of their contacts and the free agents next year will be substantially better and fit there timeline better

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      • Z-A

        They’d have almost 20M cap space if the dumped Dudley. Could offered that to Jabari Parker.

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  6. I am not sure they should look for a veteran PG & PF, the question is do they fit the time line of Phoenix? With 2 vets they can improve a bit more that they will already, but still doubt they will get in playoffs, that could be a couple years ahead & then to keep climbing… I would stick with younger guys to keep developing them, also as much as I am not sold at all with Bender & Chriss, maybe they should have one last shot at them.

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    • SuperSinker

      I think it’s mostly about moving the culture forward as well. Getting NBA veterans who know how to take care of themselves, try to surround all those young people with teammates who can keep them accountable etc. Also to show the league that the organization is climbing out of the basement.

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  7. High end RFAs aren’t really available (forget Parker and probably LaVine as well, who isn’t even a fit). Even the next tier like Smart are going to need to be overpays for their team to just let them walk. Do they really want a THJ type being paid like the player he never was? Smart’s never been a starting PG or consistently played starter minutes, and can’t shoot. I’d prefer to add a veteran who can facilitate the development of the younger perimeter guys, but not a ball dominant PG. If he’s healthy, Beverly would be a good fit as he’s been a top 3 & D PG alongside a ball dominant SG and excelled in the role.

    Warren is a 4 at this point and a typical high scorer on a bad team. But if they’re committed to him, and he is signed, there won’t be PT to develop both of the rookie scale guys (and, if they sign another big in FA, maybe not either one). I’d prefer to deal Warren, not sign another big, and let these two get minutes, and make a call mid-year. They both may fit longer term with Ayton, but, after 2 years, further development requires PT and there’s no point in keeping them around if they’re not going to get it and there’s a market, which I’m guessing there will be.

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    • formerlyz

      They can poison pill Smart or give him 3 years/$45 million, with an option and see if Boston matches. They’ll still have cap space next year when everyone else expires

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      • old_cheapy_fred

        OK. I think it’s an overpay, but that’s what RFA is about and its better value than THJ last year. I assume the 4th year would have to be a player option, and there would be some kind of trade kicker (so Boston can’t match to flip at mid-season so easily, though of course neither can the Suns). Maybe it can be done for less money in cooperation with Boston via a S&T (non-matching).

        Either way, I think there are better uses of the money. I’m not excited about adding Smart between Booker and Jackson, with maybe Warren at the four. Only one above par 3 pt shooter in the starting lineup, and I have a 40 mm back court. Booker hasn’t, but will in October, sign for 25 mm per starting 2019-20.

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        • formerlyz

          They shouldn’t extend Booker now, in my opinion. I also see the rotation a bit differently than you do

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