Goran Dragic, Gerald Green, Miles Plumlee

Report: Suns want to trade No. 27 pick for future first rounder


The Suns have seven players – Goran Dragic (28), Gerald Green (28), Miles Plumlee (25), Markieff Morris (24), Marcus Morris (24), Alex Len (20) and Archie Goodwin (19) – who are both under 30 and on a guaranteed contract for next season.

They have two more players under 30 – Eric Bledsoe (24) and P.J. Tucker (29) – who are restricted free agents and likely to return.

Plus, they have the Nos. 14, 18, 27 and No. 50 picks in the 2014 draft.

Phoenix is running out of room for talent. That’s an enviable position, no doubt. But for those players to develop, they need minutes, and the more crowded the roster gets, the fewer minutes to go around.

That’s why a trade might be in order.

Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated on the No. 27 pick:

Rival executives say Phoenix is shopping this pick, looking for a future first rounder in return.

That the Suns want to trade one of their draft picks is hardly surprising. The asking price is interesting.

The 2014 draft is strong, and the No. 27 pick could be equivalent to about the No. 22 pick in an average draft. That might convince a team – with the right protections – to trade a future pick for this one.

However, the No. 27 pick is just four from the second round – when contracts become more favorable to teams. That will hurt Phoenix’s negotiating position.

This could come down to the Suns going on the clock for the pick. Once teams know who will be available, they might be more tempted to make a deal.

Looks like Donovan to keep Andre Roberson, Steven Adams as starters

Los Angeles Clippers v Oklahoma City Thunder
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Billy Donovan was given the head coaching job in Oklahoma City to bring their offense into modern times — and it seems to be working, Russell Westbrook said he feels a lot more space in the system.

But if the Thunder are going to contend for a title, they need a top 10 defense as well — and to do that Donovan is going to keep a Scott Brooks move and continue to start  Andre Roberson and Steven Adams. Check out the starting lineup for their first preseason game Wednesday.

There also was this report via Anthony Slater in the Oklahoman yesterday about a scrimmage at practice.

Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka and Andre Roberson all started for the White team. Nick Collison joined them, but that was only because Steven Adams sat out with back soreness….

Donovan said the teams weren’t split by accident. That’s how they’ve been divided in practice. So at this point, it seems Roberson is this team’s starting shooting guard and Adams is the team’s starting center.

This is the smart move. Last season the lineup of Westbrook, Roberson, Durant, Ibaka and Adams was +13.4 points per 100 possessions over their opponents. Roberson and Adams are there for defense — neither brings much offensive game to the floor, but when you have Westbrook and Durant and only one ball between them, you don’t need more offensive threats. You’re going to get plenty of points.

If they can just stay healthy, Oklahoma City is a team to be feared.

Knicks’ legend Harry Gallatin passes away at age 88

Harry Gallatin
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The Hall of Fame player behind the original iron man streak is with us no more.

Knicks’ legend Harry Gallatin passes away at age 88, the team confirmed Wednesday.

Gallatin led the Knicks of the late 1940s and into the 1950s, when he set a then record playing in 610 consecutive games. Nicknamed “The Horse,” he was a beast on the boards who averaged 15.3 rebounds a game one season and averaged 11.9 boards and 13 points per game over the course of his 10-year career. He’s still fourth all time in total rebounds in Knicks franchise history.

Gallatin was a seven-time All-Star and twice All-NBA selection. After his playing days, he spent many years as the athletic director at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

Our thoughts are with his family and friends.