Suns ready to make a move?

June, 21, 2008

Sources say the Phoenix Suns appear poised to make a draft day deal.

They are talking with Toronto about sending Boris Diaw to the Raptors for T.J. Ford and the 17th pick in Thursday's draft. Ford, who would back up Steve Nash, played for new Suns coach Terry Porter in Milwaukee from 2003 to 2005.

The Suns are also considering a trade with Portland in which they would send Leandro Barbosa to the Blazers for Martell Webster and the 13th pick of this year's draft.

Only one, if any, of those trades will happen.

Elsewhere, some say Atlanta doesn't want to go above $11 million per year to sign restricted free agent Josh Smith. If that's the case, look for Smith to end up in Philadelphia.

The Sixers would love to get Elton Brand, but word is that he doesn't want to take a pay cut from the $16 million-plus he's due next season -- except to go to Miami.

So with Brand pretty much out of the question, Philly will look at Smith and Antawn Jamison. The Sixers can start either one at $11 million with 8 percent annual increases.

Smith, by the way, would fit perfectly in Philly's up-tempo, run-and-jump system. But I think Atlanta must match whatever offer he gets. If they don't re-sign him, they'll lose all the momentum they gained by taking Boston to seven games, not to mention a great budding young talent.

Miami is trying desperately to find a way to get Brand, whose first choice is the Heat, but a sign-and-trade for Shawn Marion is probably the only way to get it done. Hard to see that happening.


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