Report: Phoenix Suns Open to Trading 2014 First-Round Picks for Superstars

Adam FromalNational NBA Featured ColumnistDecember 13, 2013

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The Phoenix Suns clearly subscribe to the belief that it's possible to have too much of a good thing. 

As Scott Howard-Cooper reports on, general manager Ryan McDonough and the rest of the talented desert-based front office are now shopping some of their first-round picks in the 2014 NBA draft: 

The Suns, obviously encouraged by a promising start and with several attractive assets at their disposal, are making it known around the league they are open to trading one or more picks in the loaded 2014 draft if they can get an established star capable of making an impact now, has learned.

Get over your initial trepidation, which is understandable since it's become common knowledge that the first round of the 2014 draft is going to be ridiculously loaded—as in, loaded on a historical scale. 

This decision still makes a lot of sense on a lot of levels. 

By landing an established star to pair with Eric Bledsoe—who we can safely assume is off the market—the Suns would immediately gain legitimacy as a playoff team in the Western Conference. They're already in the conversation thanks to a shocking start, but stars take away a large degree of uncertainty. 

As McDonough told Howard-Cooper: 

I think one of the things that’s important for people to realize is that we may not draft four players even if we have four picks Our preference would probably be to maybe package a few of them. We’re obviously all looking for stars and we feel like we can put together a package as good, if not better, than any other team in the league if and when a star becomes available.

Additionally, the Suns simply have too many first-round draft picks over the next couple of years. 

Phoenix owns its own selection in 2014, but it also has the potential to gain up to three more. Minnesota owes them a first-rounder that's protected for the top 13 picks, Washington has to give up a top-12-protected first-rounder and Indiana owes a lottery-protected first-rounder. 

On top of that, the Lakers will be handing over a 2015 first-round pick, so long as they aren't drafting in one of the top-five spots. 

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 15: Alex Len #21 and Archie Goodwin #20 of the Phoenix Suns unveils new uniforms on August 15, 2013 at Scottsdale Fashion Square in Scottsdale, Arizona. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or
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Let's say that the Suns both get and decide to use all of them. After factoring in the first-round selections of Alex Len and Archie Goodwin this year, they'd be looking at eight players drafted in either 2013, 2014 or 2015 when the 2015-16 season rolled around. 

No matter how much talent those young guys have, that's not a recipe for making the playoffs. It's possible to have too much youth, and rostering eight players with a maximum of two years of experience is a perfect example. 

After the Suns acquired their final pick, B/R's Jonathan Wasserman wrote, "The Suns have a plan here, and it's certainly a good one. Consider it a three-year plan—with the goal being to build a competitive roster by 2016-17."

It may be a good plan for 2016-17, but a trade is a better one. A trade makes sense. In fact, I'd go so far as saying that—assuming everything goes as planned and the Suns end up with at least three picks in the first round of the 2014 draft—a trade is necessary. 

Phoenix is in great shape moving forward, especially now that so many pieces are looking good in the desert sooner than expected. But counterintuitive as it may seem, too many draft picks could actually set the Suns back in their quest for a return to the postseason. 


For more thoughts, ones that may or may not be counterintuitive, follow me on Twitter @fromal09.