The Phoenix Suns have not been a stable organization when it comes to the roster. Three times in the past four seasons now they have made big trades during the season and of course last summer saw a massive roster overhaul when Amare Stoudemire left along with Louis Amundson and Leandro Barbosa. Of the current players, only Steve Nash and Grant Hill have been on the team more than three years.
Nash has often talked about the need for chemistry, cohesion and continuity and frequently cited this summer's roster turnover as one reason why the team was taking time to gel. With today's trade, Nash will once again be faced with learning to play with a new teammate who needs the ball in his hands. In this case, that means Vince Carter, who doesn't have a reputation as a guy who's fit in well at any point in his 12-year NBA career.
For Alvin Gentry, this trade means learning how to best use three new players and figuring how how to balance the minutes among his deep roster. Despite this concerns, both Nash and Grant Hill have expressed initial support of the trade.
Suns President of Basketball Operations Lon Babby said this about his team's veterans reactions to the news:
"We've discussed this with them, both Steve and Grant. They embrace it and I think they are excited about it. It's hard for them because they are seeing their friends leave town, but on the other hand, they are understanding of how this is going to make us a better team ... What they've communicated with us is that they are very much in support of this."
Alvin Gentry also was supportive of his new players in an interview with Yahoo! Sports.
"Vince is one of the most talented guys in the NBA," Gentry said. "We got to get him back playing to that level. We hate to lose J-Rich, but to get a player of [Carter's] caliber we had to give something.
[...]"Gortat gives us size and protects us defensively," Gentry said. "We got to get better defensively to get into the playoffs. We made a trade based on improvement. Grant was wearing down defensively. Pietrus can help."
[...]"It wasn't a good fit," Gentry said. "I thought it would be a better fit. It didn't work out. That was a disappointment."
Twenty games into the season, it was determined that Hedo Turkoglu wasn't a good fit after all the positive things said about his role on the Suns when the trade was made. That makes is difficult to take the optimism about Carter too seriously now.