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#pounditWednesday, August 10, 2022

Suns could swap Deandre Ayton for another notable center?

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

The Phoenix Suns may be going even-steven with an opponent this summer.

Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer reported Thursday that there are whispers among league personnel that the Suns could possibly flip Deandre Ayton to the Indiana Pacers in a sign-and-trade deal for fellow center Myles Turner. Fischer notes that Ayton and Turner share the same representation (Bill Duffy of BDA Sports Management).

The Suns can match any offer for the restricted free agent Ayton, but they aren’t expected to actually do so. Turner, for his part, is under contract for one more season at $17.5 million.

The two centers have fairly different skillsets. Turner is a better shot-blocker and three-point shooter, but Ayton is the superior rebounder with a more complete offensive game in the low post. A swap actually makes sense from a basketball standpoint since the Suns already have a pair of ball-dominant stars in Chris Paul and Devin Booker while the Pacers probably need a younger, more dynamic big man to pair with guard Tyrese Haliburton.

Recent indications have been that the Pacers intend to keep Turner, but that could foreseeably change for the right price. As for Ayton, he might just find himself elsewhere in the Eastern Conference if not Indiana.

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