From my stand point, the Suns made a solid deal trading for a player that was a very hot commodity for a lot of NBA teams, especially once Chris Paul decided to stay with the Clippers. But little did I know that on the day the Suns introduce Bledsoe, I would be blown away by what Caron Butler had to say.
Butler by no means is a scrub, so I don’t want to make it sound like I am not a fan of his game.
Hearing what he had to say in the press conference made me ecstatic that he is apart of this Suns roster that is being rebuilt from the ground up. Butler looked so comfortable at the press conference Thursday, spoke first and basically said, I am glad to be here, I am happy to be a part of this organization, I hope to bring a winning culture back here, all the usual things. But then he proceeded to point at Eric Bledsoe and say this is the guy you want to talk to. He is a future star and you (the media and the fans) should be ecstatic to have him.
How often do you see a veteran player in the NBA at his own press conference make it about someone else? Never! Normally when you see someone deflect attention it is so they can dance around a controversial topic. This was more of a big brother figure and a leader paving the way for the attention to be placed on what will ultimately make the organization successful.
Bledsoe even told me himself on Thursday how valuable a mentor Butler has been for him already.
“Caron was telling me throughout the season last season, he was telling me to stay with it, stay in the gym, be patient. He was guiding me the whole way,” he said. “It was a big help and now to have him on the court with me (in Phoenix), it make it even sweeter.”
I thought Caron Butler was being brought into Phoenix to play defense and knock down occasional three’s. Maybe put the team on his back here-and-there but not on a regular basis. But now I know the bigger purpose for Butler is to mentor and lead the future Suns star Eric Bledsoe into a level of responsibility that the young player has not had thrusted on him since he was the go to guy on his high school team in Alabama.
With Butler on the team, the transition into possible stardom will be much smoother for Bledsoe and for a guy who on the outside seem’s pretty shy and to himself, you couldn’t ask for anything better as you begin the biggest opportunity of your professional career.