Will Amare Stoudemire Take Phoenix Suns' Extension Offer?

Avi ScherContributor IIFebruary 14, 2010

NEW ORLEANS - FEBRUARY 01:  Amar'e Stoudemire #1 of the Phoenix Suns drives the ball around David West #30 of the New Orleans Hornets at the New Orleans Arena on February 1, 2010 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  The Suns defeated the Hornets 109-100.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Yahoo reports that the Phoenix Suns made a multi-year offer to Amare Stoudemire.  Happy Walters, Stoudemire's agent, replied this week with a counter-proposal.


No one knows exactly what the Suns offered, and no one knows what Stoudemire requested back.


Will the man that is  “Standing Tall And Talented” soon be leaving Phoenix?


The question is what the difference is.  Is STAT still asking for a maximum-value contract?  Did the Suns insult him with their offer?


The way talks have been going in Dallas this weekend, it looks like the gap is too big and that Stoudemire will be traded in the next couple of days.


Today, the strongest rumor out there is that LeBron James said he wants STAT to join his Cleveland Cavaliers.  And with that being said, the Cavs are offering the Suns the young J.J. Hickson and the expiring-contract of Zydrunas IIgauskas plus a first round pick.  


Money-wise, this would work out well for the Suns.  They get to save a lot of money on IIgauskas.  They can buy him out so he can resign with the Cavs or have him play and let his expiring contract run out at the end of the season.


Hickson is a different issue.  He is not yet as good as Amare Stoudemire, but he has the potential to be just as good, if not better.


Hickson has been showing power in the middle of the court, going strong for rebounds and blocks.  He has a good jump-shot and good power moves on offense.


There is no doubt Hickson would benefit by coming to the Suns.  He would receive more playing time than in Cleveland and would get to play with the best play-maker in the NBA. That's right: Steve Nash.


But the question is how long will it take Hickson to become a great player?  The Suns claim they want equal value for STAT.


So how is a sophomore and a 7'3" giant that will turn 35 years old in June equal to a player that can score from any spot on the court, can take any big man one on one, and is defiantly one of the most athletic power forwards/centers in the NBA?


How is that equal?


Will J.J. be a player you can build a team around?


Steve Kerr, Phoenix's president and GM, has been trying to put Jason Richardson’s name in every trade.  But no team seems to want him.  J-Rich has not shown anyone that he is worth the $13 million he is getting this season and next.


There is no doubt that the Suns trading away Raja Bell and Boris Diaw for him was a mistake and the Suns are paying for that now. (Of course we did get Jared Dudley which is a great thing.)


The Suns need to try to have J-Rich included in any deal.  That is the only way it will work.  Not many teams (if any) would trade for J-Rich one for one, so it needs to be done with a Stoudemire deal.


If the Suns want to be contenders in the next couple of years, they need more star power.  They need to keep Amare Stoudemire.


If the trade with the Cavs goes down, then so will the Suns.


The Dallas Mavericks just became the second strongest team (on paper) in the West by acquiring Caron Butler and Brendan Haywood. 


This means that the Mavs could be just as tough to beat as the L.A. Lakers.


If the Mavs play as well as they appear on paper, then the first two spots in the West will be taken.  That leaves only six spots for the playoffs and eight teams that want it.


Steve Kerr needs do to a lot of thinking, but the most important thought should be what the Suns want.  Do they want to save money on players and lose money from fans (and lose fans)?  Or do they want to improve the team and make more money for the fans (and keep them happy)?

The next five days will tell how he decides.