A couple of Syracuse fan favorites now plying their trade in the NBA may soon have new homes. Rumors of a three team trade have Wesley Johnson departing from the Minnesota Timberwolves and heading to the desert to play for the Phoenix Suns. Current Sun Hakim Warrick would head down to New Orleans to play alongside/behind #1 overall pick Anthony Davis for the Hornets. The rest of the players involved don’t really matter because they didn’t play for Syracuse.
I doubt the trade really impacts either player at all. Hak has carved out a niche as a role player, averaging 9.5 PPG and 4.1 RPG during is seven year career. There’s no reason to think that a move to the Big Easy. The Hornets have already acquired stretch 4-man Ryan Anderson this off-season and he’s likely to get the starting job. Then, of course, there’s the aforementioned Davis who is likely going to be primed to start at centers after suiting up for Team USA during the olympics. Expect Hak to be a solid, maybe even prominent players off the bench, but the move wouldn’t really improve raise his profile any.
Wes might have the most to gain. It’s no secret that the Timberwolves are a woefully mismanaged organization. That doesn’t quite explain Wes’ struggles so far during his young career, but there’s always that notion that a change of scenery can help a struggling player find his mojo. I don’t particularly buy into that notion. From what I’ve been able to see of Wes in Minny, his primary problem is that he thinks too much. There’s not denying that Wes is an explosive and talented player. But when he gets the ball, he tends to hesitate that half a count that negates his athleticism, which is by far the better part of his game. That could very well follow him to Phoenix, where the Suns are looking to rebuild after trading future Hall of Famer Steve Nash to the Lakers and acquiring Luis Scola of waivers (a move which, incidentally, made Hak expendable). It’ll be interesting to see how Wes responds.