Eric Bledsoe emerged as one of the top young point guards in the NBA this past season, yet he remains a free agent well into August. With the restricted free agent and his former team, the Phoenix Suns, still far apart on contract discussions (Bledsoe wants a max deal and the Suns have only reportedly offered him $48 million), Phoenix is now entertaining the idea of pulling off a sign-and-trade with Bledsoe this offseason.
The Suns have contacted at least one team and taken inquiries from others regarding the possibility of executing a Bledsoe sign-and-trade. That would include the Suns signing Bledsoe, a restricted free agent, to a contract on behalf of another team in exchange for player(s) and/or draft pick(s). Other league executives who have not been contacted by the Suns said that they have heard Phoenix is looking into the possibility. The Suns declined comment.
Still, the picture a NBA general manager pained to the Sporting News on Friday doesn’t bode well for trades involving Eric Bledsoe or Greg Monroe, last of the Detroit Pistons.
“I think any one of us would be wary of getting involved in a trade for either player,” the GM said. “Their teams overvalue them in terms of making trades, they don’t want to give them away for nothing. There’s no reason to give up significant assets for players who probably will be available next summer. That doesn’t mean a deal can’t get done, but it is complicated.” …
Considering that, and the fact that no other team has given Bledsoe an offer sheet, the most likely scenarios are the point guard accepting the $3.73 million qualifying offer and becoming an unrestricted free agent next season or accepting the Suns’ $48 million offer.
Bledsoe averaged 17.7 points and 5.5 assists per game last season.