On Tuesday Josh Smith of the Atlanta Hawks was once again rumored to be on the way out. It's not because of his play, but rather money. By extending Al Horford and paying Joe Johnson a gazillion dollars, there does not seem to be room for the Hawks to keep Smith.
The Suns were cited as a possible landing destination. Since Amar'e Stoudemire was let go, the Suns have been relying on Hedo Turkoglu to hold down the power forward position in a game of mismatches. But wouldn't it be great if Phoenix had a starting power forward that is an athletic scorer, a good rebounder, and a very good shot blocker?
This is not the first time that this idea has come up in the minds of Phoenix fans. There was chatter about it with his availability over the summer and over on Bright Side of the Sun a couple of trade possibilities were conjured up. Jason Richardson would leave and go to a third team in the mix, Earl Clark would go to Atlanta, Smith would become a Sun and a point guard from another team would go to Atlanta.
Sexy, right? The money works, the Suns move Richardson's contract, they get a true power forward, Atlanta gets a needed point guard, and the other team gets a very good shooting guard.
It also creates a more traditional lineup. Josh Childress starts, Turkoglu backs up Grant Hill, and Smith starts with Warrick relieving him. Sounds perfect. But is it?
A starting lineup of Nash, Childress, Hill, Smith and Lopez has good balance, but there would be a void of a true number one scoring option. Nash can do it, but that isn't necessarily the best option. Childress and Smith can score and Lopez has shown he maybe can, but none has ever been a number one guy. Grant Hill was at one time, but that was long ago.
Knowing how Nash is, it would likely be fine because he distributes the ball so well, but the three-point offense from the starters would not be as effective.
Defensively, that starting group could potentially be elite. Nash's defensive flaws would be protected, and there would be shot blocking from both Smith and Lopez. It would be scary good defensively.
Obviously this is a whole lot of ‘what if', but it is worth thinking (dreaming about). What does the public think? Would you move Richardson and Clark to get Smith? Or would you think that the potential offensive losses would be a detriment, especially in close games? Would Smith be great or would Smith/Childress 2.0 (they both played in Atlanta together before) get the same (not good) results as it did in version 1.0?