The End Of The Shaq Era In Phoenix Draws NighS

One year ago yesterday, the Phoenix Suns traded for Shaquille O'Neal. Today, Marc Stein of ESPN.com is reporting that the Suns are possibly looking to trade Shaq and one-time future cornerstone Amare Stoudemire.

When the Shaq trade went down one year ago, many people struggled to make sense of it, including Mr. Emeritus himself. Adding a slow, old behemoth like Shaq to a team built for speed seemed like a dumb idea at the time, and a year later that seems to still be the case. The Suns lost in the first round of the playoffs last year and are currently mired in ninth place in the Western Conference. Shaq is also making, like, a billion dollars per year or something (actual retail price: $20,000,000).

Amare Stoudemire is making upwards of $15,000,000, sure, but is only 26. Seems a bit young to be jettisoned for salary purposes, but the Suns seem to be giving up on him; Stoudemire himself seems resigned to leaving the desert. I'm not sure that Suns GM Steve Kerr understands that the point of a youth movement is to keep the young players. Overrated MVP Steve Nash is 35, makes over $12 million a year...and is reportedly completely untouchable. Eventually, Kerr will trade away all the scapegoats and there will be no one left to blame except himself.

[ESPN.com]