Thaddeus Young trade: Potential Phoenix Suns deals to acquire San Antonio Spurs forward

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Earlier this week, a report from The Athletic’s Shams Charania that the Phoenix Suns were “among the contenders who have pursued” a trade with the San Antonio Spurs for veteran forward Thaddeus Young set off a wave of speculation.

Many NBA writers raved about Young, who spent the past two seasons with the Chicago Bulls, and his potential fit in Phoenix.

But what would it cost the Suns to trade for the forward, who averaged 12.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 4.3 assists last season?

NBA writers shared their thoughts on what Phoenix could offer San Antonio for the player.

Injured veteran Dario Saric and soon to be second-year player Jalen Smith were popular parts of packages for the Suns to send the Spurs.

What would you be willing to give up for the Suns to land Young?

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CBS Sports: Dario Saric and draft picks would be ‘sensible’ for Suns, Spurs

Sam Quinn wrote: “Lesser teams can afford to wait on Saric, or even take him as little more than salary filler alongside draft capital. There isn’t an obvious area of need for Phoenix now, but as the season progresses, one may make itself known, and when it does, having $8.5 million in salary to deal without impacting the present rotation will be very valuable. The Athletic’s Shams Charania has already reported their interest in a possible replacement, San Antonio Spurs veteran Thaddeus Young, who himself was a casualty of Chicago’s pursuit of DeMar DeRozan. With the right draft capital attached, that would be a sensible deal for both sides.”

Clutch Points: Suns could package Dario Saric, Jalen Smith for Thaddeus Young

Jason Patt wrote: “The Suns are looking for better frontcourt depth because Saric tore his ACL early in the NBA Finals. He was Deandre Ayton’s primary backup all season and will miss most or all of next season. Frank Kaminsky is back in the fold, but Phoenix needs a better player than him to sub in for Ayton. It appears they’re trying to make that happen.”

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NBA Analysis: Suns send Dario Saric and Jalen Smith to Spurs for Thaddeus Young

Kenneth Teape writes: “In exchange for Young, the Spurs will be landing Dario Saric and Jalen Smith. While this package may seem underwhelming, especially with Saric expected to miss the season, Smith was a lottery pick last season. That is a good piece to get for a player that will end up playing zero minutes for your franchise. If you look at it as a continuation from the DeMar DeRozan sign-and-trade, the Spurs essentially turned him into Smith, Saric, Al-Farouq Aminu, a future first-round pick and multiple future second-round picks. In that lens, this deal looks a little better for San Antonio.”

Fansided: Suns should trade Dario Saric, future first-rounder, second-rounder

Karan Jain writes: “Young’s high-IQ, combined with his passing ability clearly helped a star put up superstar scoring numbers, and this should translate over with Booker. Phoenix needs to trade Dario Saric, a protected 2027 first round pick, and a future second round pick for him.”

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Hoops Rumors: Dario Saric and Jalen Smith could be included in Thaddeus Young trade

Luke Adams writes: “Phoenix could use some extra depth at the power forward spot since Dario Saric is expected to miss most or all of the 2021/22 campaign while recovering from a torn ACL. Any offer the Suns make for Young would likely start with Saric (who is earning $8.51MM) for salary-matching purposes and would have to include another asset or two. The Suns would have to add a little more salary to Saric’s $8.51MM to sufficiently match Young’s cap hit, and many of their lesser-paid players aren’t yet trade-eligible since they were recently signed. As such, second-year center Jalen Smith looks like a potential candidate to be included in any offer for Young, though that’s just my speculation.”

NBA Analysis: Suns send Dario Saric, Jalen Smith, 2024 first-round pick for Thaddeus Young

Brett Siegel writes: “The only way the Suns can acquire Thaddeus Young without giving up guys like Jae Crowder, Mikal Bridges and Cameron Johnson is by trading away last year’s first-round pick Jalen Smith and Dario Saric, who is currently recovering from offseason ACL surgery. San Antonio would not only be adding another center to their roster who can contribute when healthy in Saric, but they would be adding a very versatile and raw big man prospect in Smith from the Suns.”

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Forbes: Suns could send Dario Saric, Jalen Smith, two future second-round picks for Thaddeus Young

Evan Sidery writes: “For the Suns, making the salaries match in a potential Young deal is pretty easy to compile together. Trading Saric and 2020 No. 10 overall pick Jalen Smith meets the needed threshold for a Young trade to be completed. Likely having to throw in a sweetener to San Antonio, who will have many teams calling about Young leading up to the regular season, Phoenix might not mind adding two future second-round picks. So, in total, Phoenix would receive Young while the Spurs net a package featuring Saric, Smith, and two future second-round picks. Considering Young is on an expiring contract, that’s great value for San Antonio, and for Phoenix it’s another all-in push to make it back to the Finals.”

Zona Hoops: Suns could deal Jalen Smith, Dario Saric, future second-round picks for Thaddeus Young

It writes: “There have been rumblings that Phoenix could be interested in both of these players via trade, which would likely include some package of Jalen Smith, Dario Saric, and a future 2nd round pick or two. Phoenix’s depth chart is still lacking a “bigger” forward that can play up to the 4 or occasional small-ball 5 in the playoffs when necessary.”

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Reach Jeremy Cluff at jeremy.cluff@arizonarepublic.com. Follow him on Twitter @Jeremy_Cluff.

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