The Case for Phoenix Suns Keeping Marcin Gortat

Roberto PayneContributor IDecember 9, 2012

Phoenix Suns center Marcin Gortat looks upon a game against the Detroit Pistons
Phoenix Suns center Marcin Gortat looks upon a game against the Detroit PistonsTim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

It's no secret the Phoenix Suns are amid a troubling time in the history of the franchise.

The losses are coming at an unprecedented rate and this season could turn out to be the second worst in team history if the current winning percentage (.333) persists.

One of the few bright spots of the season has been center Marcin Gortat, who has shown to be a top-flight NBA center.

Gortat's stat-line of 11 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 1.2 APG, 2.0 BPG, 52.5 FG percentage and 69.6 FT percentage has been enough to be one of the better centers in the Western Conference.

The downside of having a productive player on a losing team is the trade rumors that will surely follow.

The word has come out that Gortat will not receive a contract extension until his current deal is done, and more trade talk will certainly follow suit.

However, should the Suns trade one of their best players? In my opinion, they should not.

Gortat could definitely net a decent return, but how does the fourth most successful franchise in NBA history (in terms of winning percentage) explain to the fans that they are starting over again?

It's bad enough the team hasn't made the playoffs since the 2009-10 season.

It's not like there aren't capable building blocks already on the roster, as Goran Dragic and Markieff Morris have emerged this season.

The main fault of this roster is the lack of a bona fide star player. Therefore, all trades should be geared toward acquiring that star player.

There are only about 15-20 players in the NBA who clearly fall into the realm of being a star player and it's tough to see any of them being available via a Gortat trade.

What's even more interesting is how only contending teams or teams on the brink of contention would seem to have interest in Gortat. 

That dramatically reduces possible trade partners and Boston, Oklahoma City and Miami immediately come to mind as possible fits.

Boston has young players to trade Phoenix but would the Suns agree to trade arguably their second best player for, say, Avery Bradley and parts?

Miami doesn't have a true starting center on their roster but has become content with playing small-ball and probably doesn't have the trade assets to make a deal, anyway.

Oklahoma City could offer Kendrick Perkins, young players (Jeremy Lamb or Perry Jones III) and a draft pick. This is probably the best Phoenix could do if Gortat was traded away.

That being said, I'm not sure these trades would dramatically help the future of a ball club that desperately needs a star.

In my opinion, it makes more sense to keep Gortat and know that one of the better centers in the NBA is on the roster.