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#pounditThursday, July 7, 2022

Deandre Ayton reportedly being pursued by 2 main teams

Deandre Ayton looks ahead

Jan 3, 2020; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) against the New York Knicks at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Rumors continue to intensify that Deandre Ayton will depart the Phoenix Suns this summer, and two teams appear to be emerging as possible favorites to sign him.

The Atlanta Hawks and Detroit Pistons have both made Ayton a “highly sought after” target, according to Zach Harper of The Athletic. The Sacramento Kings have also checked in on Ayton, though their interest does not seem as overt at the moment.

Ayton is a restricted free agent, so the Suns would have to work with him in order to move him this offseason. That would either involve refusing to match an offer sheet or negotiating a sign-and-trade. The Hawks on paper have more pieces that Phoenix might want in a trade, but the Pistons freed up a lot of cap space on Wednesday that could be dedicated to Ayton.

There do seem to be growing hints that Ayton’s future is away from the Suns. Both sides might be open to making that happen, but where and how remain questions that are yet to be answered.

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