As the Phoenix Suns lineup becomes clearer throughout the offseason, Eric Bledsoe’s future remains to provide a bit of an uncertainty.
Bledsoe’s camp has made it clear he is looking for a 5-year, $80-million deal, something much higher than the 4-year $48 million contract the Suns have offered.
Los Angeles Lakers radio play-by-play announcer John Ireland said Bledsoe and his camp are asking a lot for a player who has never been the best player on his team and someone with injury history, something Brad Cesmat shared in his latest Three Dot Thoughts.
“When he was in Kentucky, he played guard opposite John Wall…When Eric Bledsoe got to the Clippers, he played with Chris Paul…Those of us who work for the Lakers all think that the best guard on that team is Goran Dragic,” Ireland said told Brad Cesmat Tuesday, “He’s asking to be paid like the best player to whatever team he goes to whether it be with Phoenix or the Lakers or any other team”.
Rumors have been swirling around a Bledsoe for Julius Randle trade with the Lakers. Though, according to Ireland, that deal is far from a reality.
“The Lakers love Randle and I don’t think they’re going to do it,” Ireland said. “I would be shocked if the Lakers traded Julius Randle for Eric Bledsoe.”
Reports have come out the Lakers are more willing to part with a package including Jordan Hill, Steve Nash’s expiring contract, and the #1 pick the Lakers acquired from the Houston Rockets in the Jeremy Lin trade. Ireland questions how that deal benefits Phoenix, simply saying, “Why would the Suns do that?”
Another factor that could hinder Bledsoe to don the purple and gold is the Lakers’ financial situation.
“The Lakers are fiercely protective of their cap space to the point where they treat it like gold,” Ireland said. “They would be willing to give Bledsoe a lot of money for two, maybe three years…but the five-years, $80-million is not coming from the Lakers.”
Bledsoe’s future may be a bit clearer once an offer sheet is presented to the Suns, but until then, expect plenty of rumors about “Baby ‘Bron’s” landing spot, whether it be with the Suns, Lakers, or elsewhere in the league.