Phoenix Suns’ wing Jae Crowder is holding out from training camp while his team works on a trade request – but it may not be easy for the organization to find the right package before the start of the regular season.
Crowder, 32, is set to make $10.184 million for the 2022-23 NBA season; which is slightly too large a salary to fit into any existing trade-exceptions, per NBA analyst Eric Pincus.
That means that teams interested in trading for Crowder – sans the Indiana Pacers and San Antonio Spurs (who have cap space equal to or more than Crowder’s salary) – will have to send out players in return.
With training camp underway, most, if not all contenders will want to see what they have in their roster before sending out substantial salary to trade for Crowder.
The Miami Heat, Boston Celtics, and Dallas Mavericks – all teams Crowder played for before – seem like natural fits; but salary-matching makes them highly unlikely.
The Heat would almost certainly have to include Duncan Robinson ($16.9 million) – but the Suns likely wouldn’t want to take on the remaining three years on his contract.
The Celtics wouldn’t be able to match salaries without trading one of their core pieces, unless they traded Grant Williams and Danilo Gallinari; which doesn’t seem worthwhile for Crowder who’s on an expiring contract.
The Mavericks have a lot of contracts in the $3 million to $15 million range – but it seems unlikely they’d want to part with one of their established role-players; unless the Suns were interested in Davis Bertans ($16 million).
If Crowder is traded before the start of the regular-season, it will probably be a to a team few expect.