The Phoenix Suns were eliminated from the postseason on Sunday in a blowout 123-90 loss to the Dallas Mavericks in Game 7 of the Western Conference Finals.
Now heading into the offseason, Suns center Deandre Ayton is likely set to be the most coveted young player available in free agency. The 23-year-old big man will be a restricted free agent after failing to come to terms on a rookie contract extension prior to the season.
One star player appears to have already expressed interest in adding Ayton to his team. Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard "liked" a tweet suggesting that Ayton take his talents up north:
While it's likely that Phoenix will be looking to retain Ayton, the situation between him and the franchise apparently isn't perfect. Ayton was held to just five points in 17 minutes during Sunday's loss. When asked why the center saw so little playing time, Suns head coach Monty Williams responded, "It's internal."
Lillard was limited to 29 games this season due to abdominal surgery, so he will surely be looking to have a bounce-back year. Adding a player like Ayton would give him a strong running mate to help Portland improve on its 27-55 finish in 2021-22.