The Phoenix Suns have gone full force in recent months in their pursuit of winning their first NBA Championship.
They traded two key depth pieces in February for Kevin Durant in Cameron Johnson and Mikal Bridges as well as several first-round draft picks, and this month they traded Chris Paul and Landry Shamet as well as four more first-round picks. Deals with selections. Three-time All-Star guard Bradley Beal.
Both trades have left the Suns without any depth, but on Friday, they took a small step toward replenishing that depth by signing free-agent forward Yuta Watanabe.
The Suns recruit a big wing pickup in Watanabe, around Devin Booker, Kevin Durant and Bradley Beal. 44.4 percent three-point shooter, depth in the frontcourt and a reunion with Durant. https://t.co/hfVDIdh2Di
Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) 30 June 2023
The 6-foot-8 forward Watanabe, who went undrafted in 2018, has emerged as a reliable 3-point shooter over the past few seasons.
This season, as a member of the Brooklyn Nets, he made an excellent 44.4 percent of his 3-point attempts, and he could help spread the field for Durant, Beal and Devin Booker.
With the Nets, Watanabe spent half the season with Durant, so the two probably won’t need to spend as much time learning to play off each other.
Phoenix is still in dire need of viable depth at multiple positions, and until they find that much depth, that lack alone could hold them from winning it all.
With all the draft picks he has been stripped of, as well as the fact that Durant is injured and nearing his 35th birthday, there is immense pressure on him to win a world title as soon as possible.
If they don’t do it next season, they’ll never be able to do it.
The Sons pulled a little trick on Friday