In the Era of NBA “Buddy Ball,” are the Suns hurting Booker?

Banana boats, summer vacations, and schemes to “team up.” This is the standard in today’s NBA. Players want to win, but they want to win while playing with their friends even more. This summer is no exception, with the #1 pick in their hands, our Phoenix Suns have a lot of decisions to make that will shape their future for years to come. The Karl-Anthony Towns debacle has been well documented, as well as Devin Booker’s interest in said situation.

There is no other way to sugarcoat this. Devin Booker wants to play with Karl-Anthony Towns. However, the only way the Suns could acquire Towns would have been to trade the prized #1 draft pick. But we all know that Suns opted to draft Deandre Ayton, as they should have. Time will tell if this decision will be the reason the Phoenix Suns make it to the Finals, or Devin Booker scorns Phoenix to eventually play with his buddy.

Don’t get me wrong, Devin Booker has lots of friends. Some of which are still on this Suns team. Mainly, point guard Tyler Ulis. However the Suns just drafted Elie Okobo and expect to have Brandon Knight back this year as well. This has complicated things. So much so that the Suns front office has had to push back the guarantee date on Tyler’s contract to buy them more time:

This tells me that Suns are doing some damage control to appease Devin Booker. First, you tell him that you aren’t going to trade a potential all-star for a proven star and friend in Karl-Anthony Towns. Then, you are going to let one of his longtime teammates and friends in Tyler Ulis leave? In the era of “buddy ball,” this could be a problem for the Phoenix Suns. However, there is a solution…

Winning! Yes, winning. Devin Booker CRAVES the playoffs, he needs it. The addition of Deandre Ayton and Mikal Bridges can get them there…eventually. Winning fixes a lot of locker room problems or player complaints. Let’s take the “Shaq & Kobe 2.0” picture that Deandre Ayton has been painting for a while. A lot of their issues together were kept at ease when they were winning championships. I, as a Suns fan myself, would gladly welcome the exact same outcome of Shaq & Kobe’s relationship and eventual breakup if it meant the Suns would finally bring home a championship.

Devin Booker, being the leader of this team, has yet to even tweet a welcome to the Suns new additions. It’s possible that he is busy in the gym, on vacation (banana boat?), or maybe he is just plain upset. Deandre Ayton is joining this team already having friendships with Josh Jackson and Mikal Bridges before the draft, it’s time that Ayton and Booker develop their chemistry. Before it is too late.

It’s very possible that there is nothing to this story and that I’m overreacting (as usual). But if the sky starts to fall in Phoenix, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

 

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