Phoenix Suns head coach Earl Watson has relegated Brandon Knight to the second unit. The move could mark a falling out between the organization and the two-time Florida Mr. Basketball.
Outside its back court rotation, the Suns don’t have any proven long-term assets. The team might auction one of its stars to compensate for the talent deficiency.
Knight’s recent demotion has made him the odd man out. Eric Bledsoe is by far the better all-around point guard on the team. At shooting guard, Devin Booker’s lethal accuracy has drawn comparisons to Ray Allen and Klay Thompson.
According to Dan Favale of Bleacher Report, the decision to have Knight come off the bench could just be Watson’s way of achieving roster equilibrium. Knight will be more efficient when he is pitted against second-string point guards. But for how long would this setup last?
Knight signed a max deal with the Suns last season. He is set to be paid $70 million in five years. That’s too much money for a sixth man.
His lucrative paycheck would be justifiable had he played an important bench role for a contending team. As of the moment, the Suns are nowhere near title contention. The team will be fortunate to win 25 games next season.
ESPN predicted that the Suns would finish fourteenth in the Western Conference, slightly edging out the woeful Los Angeles Lakers. The Suns have young, talented players to build around, but inexperience doesn’t translate to NBA wins.
By trading Knight and his massive contract, the Suns would acquire court-savvy veterans in return. This would speed up the team’s rebuilding process.
If Knight plays well as a sixth man, his trade value would skyrocket midway through the season. His demotion gives potential suitors a name to remember.
There are a number of NBA teams who are looking to bolster their point guard spot. They include the Houston Rockets, Sacramento Kings, Philadelphia 76ers and Dallas Mavericks.