Marty [Mori Chu] wrote:
Cap wrote:I think he probably would have left. He didn't want to come here in the first place, and giving up two lottery picks in the trade would have left us with very limited ability to put a good team around him. And if he did pull a McDyess it would have been a huge setback to the franchise.
I'm not seeing proponents of the trade make a lot of logical arguments that he wouldn't have left, or that the probably of it happening are so small that it makes sense as a calculated risk. Just claims that even considering the downside risk reflects cowardice, a loser's mentality, or some such character flaw.
You have every right to disagree with me. But claiming that the "we should have traded for Kyrie" camp has no logical argument at all, or that they aren't making/articulating such an argument, is inaccurate and disingenuous. For clarity, I will state the argument that we would have had a good chance to convince Kyrie Irving to stay here. If you disagree with this argument, please feel free to address any of its bullet points.
OK. Been a couple days, but this was addressed to me, so I suppose I should respond.
1. We had 2 years to convince him. That is a pretty long time to show him why it's good to play here.
Cleveland had him for 6 years. The last 3 went to the Finals. One of those trips featured Irving hitting the championship-winning shot at the end of Game 7. And they couldn't convince him to put down roots.
But 2 years of playing for Robert Sarver on a roster whose only other starter-caliber player plays a role similar to his own, that would do the trick? I think that's unlikely.
Try to take the "we" out of the equation and look at it from the perspective of an observer who speaks of the Suns in the 3rd person and looks at both sides of the balance sheet. Would you expect such an observer to see Phoenix, under the conditions of the proposed trade, as an especially attractive situation for Kyrie?
2. Playing with Devin Booker and our other young talent may have produced a promising young team, either a playoff squad or a fringe playoff squad. And Kyrie would have been an unquestioned star of the roster. This may have been enjoyable for Kyrie and caused him to enjoy being here.
Young, certainly. Most of the team would be significantly younger than Kyrie. I've seen no indication that's what Kyrie is looking for.
"Promising" is spin, not analysis. Outside of Booker (and maybe Jackson, who wouldn't be here under the proposed trade), there isn't a young player on the roster who can promise he'll ever be good enough to start for a contender. Because our young players are so young they offer hope, but what they've shown so far doesn't promise anything.
3. We had financial advantages to help keep him here. We could have offered him more years and more money than any other team could have offered. This is often a factor that gets FAs to stay with their current teams.
True, that would be an advantage, but Kyrie's willingness to forgo the financial advantage of re-signing with his own team is the reason he was on the market in the first place. Even as a team-hopper he can get a nine-figure payday that will set up his family for generations.
4. The assets we would have given up for him would not have been prohibitively valuable. Bledsoe wasn't very valuable to us, and we got almost nothing for him anyway. Jackson has not been good so far. And the 1st rounder, well, if we had been a playoff team or nearly so, the pick would not be all that valuable of an asset. I could have lived with that.
As to the latter point, Our opportunity cost is determined by the pick we have without the trade, not the pick the other team gets with the trade.
I grant that the return we got for Bledsoe was disappointing, and Jackson has been underwhelming so far. That hindsight makes the proposed trade look better now than it did at the time. But on balance, I still think it would be a bad idea.
5. Even if Kyrie had decided to leave, we could have flipped him next year for an asset if necessary. He would have been highly sought after and could have netted plenty of return.
This feels like you're just letting your imagination soar to come up with scenarios in which it works out well for us. We trade two high lotto picks for a star who says he doesn't want to be here, then flip him for a profit a year later when he says he won't stay? Has anything like that ever happened in the real world?
Let's let imagination fly in the other direction for a while.
It's 2019. Our 2016 picks are having very limited impact (not McD's fault, just a crappy draft). Our 2017 and 2018 picks are gone in the trade. Our 2019 pick isn't particularly high because Kyrie and Devin managed to carry us to 35-40 wins. Kyrie signs with another team. Outside of Booker we have basically an expansion team roster, and we're running out of time to put a good team around him before he becomes a UFA and enters his prime. In desperation we package our 2019 and 2020 picks for an established player who also turns out to be a two-year rental...
Admittedly, that's a worst case scenario. And it could still happen if Jackson and our 2018 pick both bust. But I think that trying to build through the draft yields a better chance for sustained success than a two-year rental of Irving.