The Drive with Jody Oehler

The Drive with Jody Oehler

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The Suns Deadline Problem

The clock is ticking for the Suns.

The trade deadline is tomorrow at 1 PM local time and James Jones has a problem.

The Suns are better than they were a year ago but not good enough to matter or to satisfy Devin Booker or the fan base.

On the other hand, the last thing this Suns franchise needs is more change.

The Suns have changed more directions in Devin Booker's five years than Jennifer Lopez changed outfits during the Super Bowl halftime show.

What this Suns team really needs, at its core, is more time and more patience.

This team needs time to learn new, good habits. They need time to stay on the floor together and gel as a team. They need time to figure out exactly what they have in Deandre Ayton, Mikal Bridges and Cam Johnson before making any dramatic moves.

That's not what Suns fans want to hear and I get it.

At this stage, Suns fans have been driving the car for nearly 10 years and the kids in the backseat have been asking "Are we there yet?" for over 9 of those years. Patience ran out a loooong time ago.

Fans have been patiently waiting for nearly a decade for things to turn around. They've been waiting for draft picks to pan out. For free agents to change the culture. For coaches to finally push the right buttons. For GM's to figure it all out. For Robert Sarver to change his approach.

And watching the Suns team in 2020 at times feels exactly like watching the Suns from 2011. Or 2014. Or 2019.

Sure, in a vacuum they are better have already exceeded last year's win total and remaining in mathematical striking distance of the 8 seed.

But the reality is that even though the Suns have improved, several other teams have passed them. Again.

This year its the Grizzlies and Pelicans who's young core's are threatening to change the power structure of the West in ways Suns fans have dreamed Booker and Co would have.

The Luke Kennard trade rumor is a perfect example of the Suns dilemma.

This is a trade that would make the Suns better. But its not a trade that would make them good enough. Kennard is a 23 year old sharp shooter that would help space the floor. He's the kind of complimentary player that helps your stars breathe easier on the floor.

But Suns fans don't want complimentary players, they want difference makers.

Fears continue around Deandre Ayton and his ability as a traditional center to actually impact the Suns in a major turnaround.

Should the Suns cash in some trade chips on the available D'Angelo Russell? Should they explore the trade value of Deandre Ayton? Should they try to rescuse Aaron Gordon? Jrue Holiday?

The fear is by the time they know the answer to those questions, time might have run out, if it hasn't already.

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