This could get interesting…
Before you go on crying about LeBron not wanting to go to the Western Conference or play for a team with no weapons, hear me out. I know the Suns are horrible. I know there are plenty of options for LeBron to choose from, but this could become interesting.
First off, the Suns have Devin Booker in place. A franchise star shooting guard to build around. He’s not going anywhere. You have a solid 2-guard that can be a ball handler or a catch and shoot. This squad has tons of cap room (About $30 Million in Cap, Over $50 Million before luxury tax) and many expiring contracts. So how do we make this dream a reality?
Reunite Tyson Chandler with the Mavericks
Chandler is still a solid defensive player, but he’s older and doesn’t really fill a need or role for this young Suns team. Dallas would love to make any sort of upgrade and we all know Mark Cuban is always ready to pull the trigger on a trade. In this trade, Phoenix sends Chandler and a 2nd round pick (The Suns have 4 to deal from) to the Mavericks for Wes Matthews. You bring in a 6’5 veteran with 3 point shooting (38% career).
Aaron Gordon, come on down
With high expectations and poor results thus far, the Suns grow impatient with Josh Jackson. The Orlando Magic, known for making bonehead trades and not keeping its talent around, will explore trades for the high-flying Gordon. The details are:
Josh Jackson + 1st round pick (From Heat) for Aaron Gordon (along with a 4 year contract)
This adds a scorer who can play the 3/4 and be extremely versatile.
Brandon Knight… be gone!
The big elephant in the room is the fact that Brandon Knight is still under contract…for a few more seasons. He’s currently making close to $15 million while out for the season with a torn ACL and has no role on this squad. The Suns, who are projected to have a top 5 pick in this year’s loaded draft, could dangle Knight along with that 1st to entice a young team with cap to take on the salary as well as that highly coveted pick.
Finally, in comes LeBron
With Brandon Knight gone, the Suns have enough $$$ to bring in LeBron along with signing Gordon to a long-term contract. Along with the pieces acquired, the Suns already have Booker (24 ppg, 38% from 3), TJ Warren (20 ppg), Troy Daniels (42% from 3), Jared Dudley (37% from 3), and Dragon Bender (36% from 3). This team is FULL of shooters with size and athleticism. These sort of weapons are what LeBron needs to be able to drive and dish out. Along with those trades/signings, you’re still able to sign another veteran or 2 to mid-level exceptions and possibly a smaller contract. Players like Omri Casspi, Mike Scott, Wayne Ellington, or Will Barton could be brought in to help the 2nd unit with length and shooting. A veteran big that could sign on would be Robin Lopez. He’s completely lost his minutes with the Lakers due to the team using its youth and athleticism. Lopez has adjusted to the league by developing a 3 point shot and is a legitimate 7 footer.
What a potential squad would look like
C- Dragan Bender
PF- Aaron Gordon
SF- LeBron James
SG- Wes Matthews
PG- Devin Booker
TJ Warren Brook Lopez Mike Scott Troy Daniels
Jared Dudley Tyler Ulis Marquise Chriss
Would this squad be able to beat the Golden State Warriors? Probably not, but they would definitely compete. LeBron has taken a team to the finals where it’s other stars had never been to the playoffs (i.e. Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving). He could do the same with Gordon and Booker. LeBron is surrounded by shooters and players who can create their own shot. The bench has Warren and Lopez who can score on their own, along with Scott, Daniels, and Dudley who can stretch the floor and shoot from deep. This team would be good if you had a decent SF. Placing LeBron on a team like this would make them DANGEROUS.