It’s time to play a timeless classic: disproving one rumor with another rumor! But for reasons that are of interest to Kentucky fans, this is one we will all want to believe.
According to multiple reports, there is no truth to the idea that Devin Booker wants out of his situation with the Phoenix Suns. Popular sports radio host Ryen Russillo recently said on the Bill Simmons Podcast that it was the “worst kept secret in the NBA” that the 24-year old wants out of Phoenix. But now, Arizona Sports 98.7 FM host John Gambadoro said this past Wednesday that idea is “100% NOT TRUE”, which was then shortly followed up by a report from HoopsHype stating that several NBA executives believe Booker isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, for multiple reasons.
Source: Devin Booker doesn’t want out of Phoenix.
— Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) November 6, 2020
This is 100% NOT TRUE. Book is happy in Phoenix, excited for the season, loves how they finished in the bubble, excited about free agency. Not one time has he ever told anyone he wanted out. Don't listen to this garbage.
— John Gambadoro (@Gambo987) November 4, 2020
“This is 100% NOT TRUE,” Gambadoro wrote on Twitter. “Book is happy in Phoenix, excited for the season, loves how they finished in the bubble, excited about free agency. Not one time has he ever told anyone he wanted out. Don’t listen to this garbage.”
Booker is about to enter the second season of his hefty five-year, $158 million max contract he signed with the Suns back in July of 2018. He’s coming off easily his most impressive campaign in 2019-20, where he made his first All-Star team and was the headliner of the NBA’s Orlando Bubble this past summer. Phoenix’s potential for the upcoming 2020-21 season as a borderline playoff team has outsiders wondering if Booker could meet a similar fate to that of Anthony Davis if the former is not able to find team success down the road deep into the postseason.
For now, it would appear that Booker is content with his situation with the Suns. He would likely have a difficult time trying to get out even if he were to demand a trade.
“He [Booker] has no leverage,” one Eastern Conference executive told Micahel Scotto of HoopsHype. “He’s locked up for four more years. There is no way for him to demand a trade with that much time left on his contract.”
But once again, as we saw the Davis-New Orleans-Los Angeles debacle of last summer, a superstar player is far more capable of getting his way than he ever has been before. However, he’s truly not in a bad spot with the Suns in the first place.
When you consider the positive upward trajectory of the Phoenix franchise for the first time in what feels like a decade, Booker has good reason to tough it out with the Suns. They’re coming off an unprecedented 8-0 run down in Orlando and are stocked full of young and talented assets they can continue to build around Booker with. If anything, Booker and the Suns might become the team that another disgruntled star–say, Karl-Anthony Towns?–attracts a couple of years down the road.
I fell in love with the Booker-led Phoenix Suns down in the Orlando Bubble, and I don’t want to lose that lust quite yet…