No More High-Octane, Phoenix Goes Diesel (Shaq Traded!)

6 02 2008

Well, so much for Gasol-ine, Phoenix wants Diesel.

Ridin’ off into a Phoenix sunset…

Pending Shaquille O’Neal passing a physical, the Miami Heat will deal him to the Phoenix Suns, in return Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks will be sent packing to Miami.
This trade predicates the beginning of the end of Phoenix’s run-‘n’-gun offense – there is no way the aging O’Neal will be able to keep up with the fast and frenetic pace the Suns have run up until now.

Without a doubt the acquisition of Pau Gasol by Los Angeles had a part to play in this. The Suns already had struggled with the match-up the Lakers presented, prior to obtaining Gasol.
The fast ‘n’ furious style the Suns had run the past few years, whilst effective during the regular season and incredibly entertaining to watch, met with only moderate success in the playoffs. Thus, the search for – quite literally – something big.
Johnny Ludden at Yahoo Sports reported that the Suns explored deals with Charlotte (for Okafor), and Philadelphia (Dalembert) (Ludden column).

This is a move that smacks of desperation. Come what may, this is going to have a huge impact on the way the Suns play the game.
They simply won’t be able to run. Phoenix can see that the West is wilder & woolier than ever before – the triumvirate of San Antonio, Dallas & Phoenix have slipped a little, and New Orleans, Los Angeles and Portland (how good are they going to be when you put Oden in there?) circle hungrily overhead.
There’s no forgetting Utah either – who clearly have the ability to make a push to elite status as well.

Phoenix don’t want to be put out to pasture, so that brings us back to O’Neal. One has to wonder though which Big Aristotle they’ll get. The massive, rim-rocking force of nature that we’ve seen in years past, or the slow, oft-injured out-of-shape player that Pat Riley so desperately wants to move…

From Miami’s perspective this is fantastic. They dump a huge salary, paid to a center that was aging and a mere shadow of his former great self, Bye Phoenixand get one of the most dynamic forwards in the game. A perennial fantastic player.

Me? I think this move is a mistake. Phoenix came within one Robert Horry shove of making the Western Conference finals last year (and does anyone doubt that they would’ve accounted for the Jazz?), and whilst this year hasn’t been as fantastic as they hoped, changing your entire basketball philosophy mid-season is an exercise in idiocy.

Done. Dusted. Phoenix rides off into the setting sun.

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9 responses

6 02 2008
Steve

If Shaq’s hip holds up…in short series, the Suns now can match up well with the Lakers and Spurs-and Detroit or Boston if the Suns can survive the Western Conference playoffs.

6 02 2008
withmalice

I disagree. Shaq’s well past his prime. The Lakers have two 7 footers, and Odom’s 6’10”. At the pace the Phoenix offense runs, he’ll be – at max – a 20 min guy a night. Or, they have to change their offensive strategy.

This is a knee-jerk reaction, a bad move on Phoenix’s part.
Riley must be loving it tho’.

6 02 2008
Aaron Becker

The inside tidbits I’ve heard over the past few months is that Shaq’s hips are shot. Who knows, though. My parents are Suns fans, so I wonder how they will feel about all of this. The other angle that makes me wonder about the $$$, is that they signed Nash to a 5 year 55 mill contract and the guy didn’t make one peep about more money after his two MVP awardings. Just what are they gonna be able to offer him in the next year or so? Not that I care cause I’m not a Suns fan ;~)

7 02 2008
Empty the Bench - Fantasy Sports, Fantasy Football, Fantasy Basketball, NFL, NBA

[…] – “I think this move is a mistake. Phoenix came within one Robert Horry shove of making the Western Conference finals last year (and does anyone doubt that they would’ve accounted for the Jazz?), and whilst this year hasn’t been as fantastic as they hoped, changing your entire basketball philosophy mid-season is an exercise in idiocy. Done. Dusted. Phoenix rides off into the setting sun.” – With Malice… […]

7 02 2008
MC Welk

I doubt they would have accounted for the Jazz: Utah won the season series 3-1.

7 02 2008
withmalice

The playoffs tho’… especially if they’d defeated the Spurs.

Although the Suns have always struggled against teams with a strong interior presence, which is what has motivated this deal.

7 02 2008
Phoenix

Shaq’s not going to be intimidating anyone in the West.

7 02 2008
fouledout

@ steve
I agree with WM.. this is just is a bad move for the suns. There’s a chance that shaq will get better, but he will NOT really fit in the Sun’s running game. This is just like the warriors signing C-Webb.. This trade just slows them down..

7 02 2008
UriShare - No more high-octane phoenix goes diesel (shaq traded!)

[…] No more high-octane phoenix goes diesel (shaq traded!) Pending Shaquille OâNeal passing a physical, the Miami Heat will deal him to the Phoenix Suns, in return Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks will be sent packing to Miami. Submitted: 1 minute ago Category: Sports Submitter: RssFeed Website: with-malice.com Report this link: Click here to report Comments: 0 […]

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