When Devin Booker was named to his first All Star team a few weeks ago it not only meant that Devin Booker got to go behind the velvet ropes for the first time in his career, it also meant he's going to be held to a higher standard going forward.
No one gets to reap all the benefits of praise and awards without any increase in expectations or pressure. Thats just not how it works.
So when Booker was on the floor when the Suns lost to the Pistons and Warriors at home on back to back nights, it didn't sit well with me.
How could Booker not will his team to a win over Derrick Rose? Or let Marquese Chriss and Dragan Bender come into his house and embarrass his franchise?
To make matters worse, Booker did not publicly air his team out, instead that void of leadership was filled by Mikal Bridges.
Booker's refusal to assert himself as the leader of this team publicly has created an environment where every player on the roster is comfortable trying to hold the team accountable. Elie Okobo, Bridges, Deandre Ayton, Jevon Carter and others have all tried to play leader while Booker watches on.
That's not the alpha dog mentality the Suns need from their franchise centerpiece. In the famous words of real human being Bane; Booker didn't adopt losing, he was born into it.
If Booker keeps up his beta act for the rest of the season, we may need to ask some seriously tough questions such as: Is Booker's value greater as a trade asset or as the face of the franchise?
We aren't there yet and there's absolutely, positively no way that Booker will be the subject of trade rumors as Bobby Sarvs favorite son but thats not going to stop me from recklessly speculating on trade ideas.
Consider this Booker's punishment for being the best player on the floor while watching the Warriors beat the Suns by 16.
This is sending Booker to his room and asking him to think about what he's done.
Without further ado, a few trade scenarios - with the caveat that not all of these meet the salary rules for NBA trades but those details can be worked out later.
Suns trade Devin Booker to the Hawks for John Collins, Kevin Huerter and a 1st round pick?
Suns trade Booker to the Bulls for Lauri Markkanen, Coby White and a protected first?
Neither of those make any sense for the Suns, considering they're just swapping the best player in the deal for two players that haven't contributed many wins to their current teams. Those are the kind of trades bad fantasy football GM's make.
How about these two:
Suns trade Booker to the Knicks for RJ Barrett, Frank Ntilikina and an unprotected first?
Thats tempting, you have to admit, especially if the first rounder was in the 2021 or 2022 draft.
Here's the best totally-never-going-to-happen Devin Booker fake trade:
Suns trade Booker to the New Orleans Hornets for Brandon Ingram.
Now, that one made you think.
I hope you've learned your lesson Devin.