The 4-15 Suns are the only team in a hyper-competitive Western Conference that hasn’t won at least nine games already this season. However, while Phoenix may not be ready to contend in the West quite yet, Devin Booker is thinking big after signing a five-year contract extension with the franchise over the summer, as he tells Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports.
“I’d like to build a super-team. I’d like the super-team to come to me,” Booker said. “If that’s through free agency, people seeing what we have here with the big fella [Deandre Ayton] and myself and wanting to join in on that, to reach higher heights, then I’m with that.”
Phoenix hasn’t won more than 24 games in a season since 2014/15 and looks like a good bet to finish at the bottom of the Western Conference once again in 2018/19. Still, Booker’s “super-team” goals aren’t quite as outlandish as the club’s spot in the standings might suggest.
As Booker alludes to, the Suns already have two long-term cornerstones in place — Booker is 22 years old and is under contract for five years beyond this season, while Ayton is 20 years old and in his rookie season.
The club is also fairly flexible in terms of its salary cap outlook. Ryan Anderson still has one year left on his pricey contract after this season, but otherwise, the only players on Phoenix’s books beyond 2018/19 are Booker, Ayton, Josh Jackson, Mikal Bridges, T.J. Warren, Elie Okobo, and De’Anthony Melton. On top of all that, the Suns should have another top draft pick to work with in 2019.
With Booker and Ayton locked up for the next several years and likely to keep getting better, the Suns have plenty of time to figure out how to fill out their roster with the pieces necessary to return to contention. Landing a star player via trade or free agency within the next year or two would accelerate the team’s timeline, and it sounds like Booker would like to go that route.
“It’s my job to speed up that plan and have the team believe we can move forward with me as a center point,” Booker told Goodwill.