Report: Suns Won't Trade No. 6 Draft Pick, Will Pursue Veteran PG in Free Agency

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJune 4, 2019

NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum announces that the Phoenix Suns had won the sixth pick during the NBA basketball draft lottery Tuesday, May 14, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nuccio DiNuzzo)
Nuccio DiNuzzo/Associated Press

The Phoenix Suns are reportedly not looking to trade the sixth overall pick in the 2019 NBA draft in exchange for a veteran point guard.

John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7 reported the update Tuesday and noted the team will instead look toward free agency to fill its void at point guard, with Patrick Beverley, Darren Collison, Cory Joseph and T.J. McConnell among the noteworthy options.

ESPN's Jonathan Givony reported earlier Tuesday the Suns were "open" to the idea of moving the No. 6 selection in exchange for an "established veteran who would be more ready to help them win games next season."

The idea of flipping the top-10 pick for an instant-impact point guard makes sense on the surface.

Phoenix owns one of the league's most promising starting lineups with Devin Booker, Mikal Bridges, Josh Jackson and Deandre Ayton all under the age of 23. Adding an established veteran to lead that group on a nightly basis could push the team into the playoffs next season.

Murray State's Ja Morant, the draft's top point guard prospect, is a lock to come off the board before the No. 6 spot. That could leave the Suns a choice from the second-tier options at the position, led by Vanderbilt's Darius Garland and North Carolina's Coby White.

A combination of Garland and White along with one of the veteran free agents is probably the Suns' best option for trying to win next year, while still building mostly for future contention.

On Saturday, Suns general manager James Jones explained to Kellan Olson of Arizona Sports 98.7 what type of prospects the team will be seeking in the draft.

"I think every team is looking for a guy that can switch and defend multiple positions and if you just focus on that then you have a team full of defenders without guys that can play offense," he said. "So for us, it's more important that we find guys that embrace the defensive end but show the capability of expanding their offensive game."

Those attributes sound a lot like White, who can run an offense but also has the size and quickness to guard multiple positions.