From the "I'll believe it when I see it" category, the agent for Suns C Marcin Gortat told RealGM.com that the Suns informed him they have no intention of trading his client despite taking Maryland center Alex Len with the fifth pick in Thursday's draft.
One day after the Phoenix Suns drafted Alex Len with the fifth pick in the NBA draft, Marcin Gortat was assured by the organization that it has no plan to trade him – for now – and might want to make him part of the future, his agent Guy Zucker told RealGM.
After the draft, Gortat had understood the Suns' clear transition into retooling the roster, leading to belief a trade would be beneficial to both sides. Yet, Suns coach Jeff Hornacek said Thursday that Gortat would fill a mentoring role for Len.
“It's clear they are in a rebuild and they drafted a center, so [a trade] would make sense, but for now they want to hold onto him,” Zucker said Friday afternoon. “As with everything in the league, it should be stated: As of today.”
Gortat was involved in trade discussions nearly all of last year, and was constantly unhappy with his role there. However, the Suns hired a new GM in Ryan McDonough from Boston, and a new coach in Jeff Hornacek. So their position could have totally flipped when it comes to Gortat and they really could view him as a vital contributor.
Now, Gortat's productivity plummeted last season without point guard Steve Nash, as he tallied his lowest points and rebounds per 36 minutes since his rookie season, and the lowest rebound percentage and PER of his career. So his value is a little murky at this point. But Len is so raw, it's probably a good idea to have someone around to help him develop. Is Gortat going to want to mentor the kid who's going to take his job, though? Gortat's 29 and will be a free agent after next season. He's likely looking for the last big payday. How he'll want to help Len succeed is a big question mark.
But for right now, at least, signs point to Gortat staying a Sun for the forseeable future.