Brandon Knight is not available for another NBA team’s taking…right now. But he probably will be…later.
With the Phoenix Suns sitting at 5-13, staring down the barrel of another lost season, rival teams will no doubt look to see if they enter sellers mode ahead of the February trade deadline. And while they extent of those expectations isn’t entirely clear, the general consensus, according to ESPN.com’s Marc Stein, is that Knight will be up for grabs:
Suns general manager Ryan McDonough recently went on the Burns & Gambo radio show in Phoenix and proclaimed (A) that he isn’t actively trying to trade Knight and (B) that he’d prefer to take at least two months to evaluate his team before seriously considering trades. None of that, however, has stopped interested rivals from believing that the struggling Knight — who started two games this week with TJ Warren out but mostly comes off the bench for the Suns — will be made available.
Head coach Earl Watson doesn’t roll with triple-guard lineups as often as his predecessor, Jeff Hornacek, and Knight is being used as a reserve now, so this makes sense. The Suns already have Eric Bledsoe and Devin Booker, and this backcourt-crammed experiment of theirs hasn’t worked since a surprise 2013-14 campaign.
Brandon Knight’s shooting percentages are in the toilet, and his assist rate is the lowest of his career, according to Basketball-Reference. But he’s bound to have value to someone, even at a super-deep point guard position—if only because his pre-salary-cap-boom contract runs through 2019-20, without a player option.
That being said, with Brandon Knight slumping, the Suns cannot exactly command a king’s ransom. It’s probably smart to wait and see if he can drum up his market value in the coming weeks before shipping him off elsewhere. Phoenix isn’t playing for anything special, and selling low should be out of the question. So there is no rush here.