Maybe the two most disappointing teams in the Western conference this season are the Phoenix Suns and New Orleans Pelicans. In order to make things better, we might see a trade between them, with Markieff Morris and Ryan Anderson going in opposite directions.
The Suns have fallen to 13-25 with a nine game losing streak recently broken, although it doesn’t make things much better. Their best player, Eric Bledsoe, is out for the season, and it seems like Jeff Hornacek isn’t going to last the season. Morris has been a whirlwind of rumors and problems, growing as time goes by. He has played just five times in the last 30 days because the Suns don’t think he’s trying anymore. Morris has been asking for a trade ever since his twin brother, Marcus, was traded to the Detroit Pistons. Morris actually started the season well, but three weeks into the season began falling into apathy and other behavioral problems.
The Pelicans made the playoffs last year and bringing Alvin Gentry over as the new head coach was going to make Anthony Davis into an unstoppable offensive machine and take the Pelicans to the next stage. Instead, with injuries, bad defense and struggles on offense, the Pelicans have stuttered to a 11-23 start, which isn’t a disaster in the weird West, but it’s far off expectations, while Davis doesn’t seem to be a whole lot better than he was last season.
Anderson, the Pelicans are aware, is someone a lot of teams have their eyes set on. He’s on an expiring deal and is the epitome of what some teams are looking for in their stretch 4. He has no injury problems for once (missing just two games so far this season), scoring 16.6 points on 36.6% from beyond the arc, tied for the second best of his career in terms of points per minute, averaging 19.2 points per 36 minutes, shooting 43.4% from the field, which is a nice way up from hitting rock bottom last season (39.9%).
So can these two teams do business? Morris just wants out of Phoenix, but it’s not up to him. He could bring some toughness and defense the Pelicans could really use. Anderson on the Suns? It might not make him too happy, but for Phoenix it could be an opportunity to move Anderson again before the trade deadline and get something out of his $8.5 million expiring deal. It’s worth mentioning that both teams discussed this deal during the offseason, but nothing really happened.