On the first day of free agency, rumors are sprouting like wildfires around the country and quite soon there will be a flood of actual signings. As with every year, the first few days of the wooing period are filled with crazy overpayments, fueled by surprising demands from agents who want to cash in on desperate GMs.
Offers reportedly out there (via reliable reporters on twitter) to restricted free agents: Rockets offered C Omer Asik $8 mil/yr, Wolves offered SF Nicolas Batum $10 mil/yr, Blazers offered C Roy Hibbert a MAX deal (4/$58).
The biggest fish the Suns contacted on Saturday night was SG Eric Gordon. They will meet with Gordon on Tuesday of his whirlwind tour, sandwiched in the middle of at least 5 teams wanting to offer him a MAX contract (4 yrs, $58 million). New Orleans is already floating that they would match any offer and, per Sam Amick of si.com including up to the max, to try to dissuade teams from getting excited about their client. So, this might be a lost cause but you never know if you don't try. The Suns said they would match any Joe Johnson offer back in the day too. Likely, the only way Gordon leaves is via a sign-and-trade, and the Suns don't have great assets to offer.
Players contacted so far by the Suns, according to the wonderful world of twitter:
PG: Nash ($12+ mil/yr), Dragic ($10+ mil/yr), Ray Felton
SF: Michael Beasley (gulp)
C: Chris Kaman
THAT's their first reported in-person visit??!?! Supercool Beas???
Check back all day for updates as news breaks.
No reported interest in PF Ersan Ilyasova at this point, or in SF Nicolas Batum. I would have thought the Suns would show interest in these two. Both are young (25 and 23, respectively) and just now growing into their games. Ilyasova is a tough rebounder and good shooter, while Batum can lock down all 3 perimeter positions and hit the 3-ball.
You might as well cross Goran Dragic off your radar. Dragic's agent is asking for $10 mil/yr for 4 years as guaranteed starter. No way the Suns block Kendall Marshall for 4 seasons. Better to re-sign Nash for $12+ mil/yr for 2-3 seasons.
As a stopgap 2012-2014 starter at PG, I'd much rather have Andre Miller than Ray Felton. Marshall most resembles Miller, except that Marshall is a better passer. He would do well to learn from Miller for a year or two.