NBA Trade Rumors: Phoenix Suns' Brandon Knight A Strong Trade Chip For Philadelphia 76ers Or San Antonio Spurs
Brandon Knight is among the latest subjects of recent NBA trade rumors. The point guard of the Phoenix Suns is rumored to be traded before the February trade deadline. There are two teams where Knight, who was relegated by Coach Earl Watson to a sixth man role, could possibly go.
One team is the Philadelphia 76ers which lacks an established starting point guard. Jerryd Bayless is currently battling a sore left wrist and could miss the start of the regular NBA season even if he has a three-year, $27 million contract. While Bayless is recuperating, Coach Brett Brown tapped sophomore T.J. McConnell at the ongoing preseason, Morning News USA reported.
Before his injury on April 3, Knight frequently scored 30 points, and on Nov. 20, 2015, he achieved a double-double career high of 38 points and season-high 11 rebounds in the game versus the Golden State Warriors. A player like Knight would solve the 76ers problem at the No. 1 spot with his career-high average of 19.6 points and 5.6 assists from 50 starts last season.
Watson wants a starting backcourt to be made up of Eric Bledsoe and Devin Booker. The Suns, which see Booker as the new franchise player, reportedly have given him the keys to the team. Although Knight is younger, bigger and more durable, he is not the decision-maker or dynamic scorer like Bledsoe.
Brandon Knight Still A Trade Chip
Despite Knight's sixth man role, he is still considered a trade chip by the Suns since rookie Tyler Ulis and veteran Leandro Barbosa are still part of the backcourt rotation. Speculations of the Suns being open to trading either Knight or Bledsoe have been swirling since the June NBA Draft, but latest reports said the team still prefers Knight.
The second possible team for Knight is the San Antonio Spurs. The team, after all, is possibly looking for a replacement for Tony Parker who, together with Manu Ginobili, is believed to be playing his last season for the team. The Spurs also might see Knight as a potential replacement for Tim Duncan, whose 19-year NBA career with the Spurs has concluded, leaving a big hole as the 2016-17 NBA season starts soon.
Phoenix Suns Prefer Bledsoe Over Knight?
Yet, contrary to what Morning News USA speculated, Sportsrageous claimed that Watson prefers Bledsoe as their starting point guard, which sparked speculations of the Spurs being interested in Knight who earns $14 million per season to be a backup.
If the "big three" - Parker, Ginobili and Duncan - would leave San Antonio one by one, the survival of the team in succeeding years would be questionable. Still, LaMarcus Aldridge and Kawhi Leonard's presence could ease the pain as the team's aging superstars' exit becomes imminent.
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