Raptors trade center Jared Sullinger to Suns
- Author: Zachary Reyes Feb 23, 2017,
Feb 23, 2017, 23:12
The cost for Tucker was a pair of second-round picks and Jared Sullinger, who never really did get to show Toronto what he could do. He served primarily as a starter from 2012-13 through 2015-16, but has transitioned to a bench role in 2016-17. He is averaging seven points, six rebounds and 1.5 steals per game this season and is best known for his outstanding defense.
The Raptors held out on giving Phoenix the first-round pick it originally wanted in any Tucker deal, and will reap the benefits.
Tucker isn't a flashy player, but he is rugged, tenacious and works hard on the defensive end of the floor. He has averaged 3.4 points, 2.5 rebounds and 10.7 minutes per game.
He is a true grinder and leader on the floor, and while he was a good fit in Phoenix due to its young core, the Suns likely made a wise move by trading him away. It's presently more than $15.2 million over the cap and has just under $4 million in luxury tax space and Tucker's $5.3 million expiring deal could go a long way in making the Raptors stronger players in free agency and help keep point guard Kyle Lowry this summer.
All told, that's two significant upgrades at backup small forward and starting power forward in exchange for Terrence Ross, Sullinger, a first-round pick and two seconds. He has averaged 10.8 points and 7.5 rebounds per game during his five-year National Basketball Association career.
The big man has played in just 11 games this season after returning from foot surgery.