News came out today that the Phoenix Suns are one of two teams that are interested in Raptors point guard Fred VanVleet in free agency this summer if he doesn’t resign back with the team according to Shams.
Shams says the Magic and Suns are two early contenders expected to pursue Fred VanVleet when he becomes an unrestricted free agent this offseason. https://t.co/BObBa2axhP
— Evan Sidery (@esidery) January 17, 2023
VanVleet is averaging 18.2 PPG, 6.3 APG, 4.3 RPG, and 1.5 STL per game. He’s shooting a career-low 3-point percentage this season at 32.5% and his lowest field goal percentage since his rookie year back in 2016 at 37%. VanVleet also has a championship ring after winning the NBA Finals with the Raptors back in 2019.
Since that time, the Raptors have struggled to get back to the NBA Finals and the Eastern Conference Finals by losing in the semifinals the year after, not making the playoffs the following year, and losing in the first round last year to the Philadelphia 76ers.
There have been rumors going around that the state of the team hasn’t been great and that players are looking to leave the team according to New Orleans Pelicans player C.J. McCollum.
“There’s rumblings about certain players on the team not being happy and due to tampering, I can’t speak to that but I think they’re gonna move someone.” 👀👀👀
– CJ McCollum on the Raptors
— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) January 16, 2023
VanVleet also hopped on J.J. Redick’s podcast to talk about the state of the Toronto Raptors and he had a lot to say in regard to what’s been going on this season.
“Our defence has been s*** so far.”
— Sid Seixeiro (@Sid_Seixeiro) January 5, 2023
In the podcast as well, he talked about this upcoming free agency for himself and if he’s planning to stay with the Raptors. He kept it very candid and honest about what his plans are when it comes to his decision this summer.
“I’m gonna look at all the offers on the table. I know what I feel like I’m worth and I’ll see if their minds are in the same place as me and if not, then we’ll take the best deal that’s on the table.”
As for the Sun’s side of things in regards to pursuing a guy like VanVleet, the question then becomes what does this mean for a veteran point guard and future Hall of Famer Chris Paul.
Paul is in the second year of his 4 years 120 million dollar contract that he signed back in 2021. He’s due $30.8 million of his contract next season but the Suns only have to pay $15.8 million of it next season.
The question then comes down to are the Suns going to have Fred VanVleet come aboard on a big contract but come off the bench and play a 6th man role. Or are the Suns going to demote Chris Paul to a bench role and have VanVleet be the new starting franchise point guard? It’s an important question to ask especially with the state of where the Suns as a team is right now.
There’s a lot of time between now and the offseason for the Suns to make a decision on this and it’s going to be interesting to see what the team does when it comes to this big decision.