The Phoenix Suns have been eyeing Ray Allen in free agency, according to a report from Yahoo! Sports. But given that the Suns are currently rebuilding and Allen is in the twilight years of his career, the Suns' pursuit of Allen makes no sense.
The Phoenix Suns have surfaced as serious contenders to sign Boston Celtics free agent Ray Allen, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.
Allen, 37, is willing to explore offers beyond Boston. The Suns—regardless of whether they re-sign free-agent point guard Steve Nash—interest Allen, sources said.
The Suns have significant salary-cap space, and could pay Allen more than the Miami Heat or New York Knicks. Suns president Lon Babby had been Allen’s agent for a significant part of his career until Babby started running Phoenix’s basketball operations two years ago.
The Suns have been at somewhat of a standstill over the past two years. In 2010-11, the Suns were 40-42 (.487 winning percentage) and failed to qualify for the playoffs. In the lockout-shortened season, Phoenix was 33-33 (.500 winning percentage) and again failed to make the playoffs.
With veteran point guard Steve Nash an unrestricted free agent, now is the time for Phoenix to look to the future. But bringing in Ray Allen would do the exact opposite. With Allen, the Suns would need to be in win-now mode again, but they just don't have the assets to do it.
If Nash was still under contract for another year or two, bringing in Allen might make sense. But without Nash on the roster, there's really no point.
From Allen's perspective, signing in Phoenix makes no sense. Allen is at the stage in his career where he's only got a few more productive seasons. Why would he want to go to a franchise that has no shot at winning a title?
To me, this seems like a ploy by Allen and his representatives to artificially manipulate the market. Maybe they think by building up interest from the Suns, it will put pressure on reported suitors like the Celtics, Knicks and Heat to up their offers.
Outside of that, signing in Phoenix makes absolutely no sense for the Suns or Allen. It would be like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.
The Suns need to focus on acquiring young players and building for the long run. Allen needs to sign with a team that gives him another chance at winning a second NBA championship. Anything different for either side is simply counterproductive.