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Eric Bledsoe: Suns shutting me down healthy last season sparked trade request

Eric Bledsoe

during the NBA game at Talking Stick Resort Arena on December 20, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. 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.

Christian Petersen

Suns general manager Ryan McDonough said Eric Bledsoe requested a trade after Phoenix refused to renegotiate-and-extend the guard’s contract over the offseason.

Bledsoe, traded to the Bucks, provided a different reason.

Bledsoe, via Chris Haynes of ESPN:

“I felt like it was time [to leave], especially when they sat me down last year,” Bledsoe said. “It gave me a better picture, a more clearer picture of what I needed to do.”

At the time, word trickled out that he was dealing with “knee soreness,” possibly to justify shutting him down.

“I was 100 percent healthy then, and I’m 100 percent healthy now,” Bledsoe said adamantly.

Phoenix shut down Bledsoe for the final month of the season in a
transparent bid to tank.

Bledsoe – healthy and in his prime – rightfully took umbrage. By manipulating Bledsoe’s playing time in order to lose, the Suns lost the moral high ground. They suddenly wanted unquestioned devotion from him after showing so little care for his aspirations – like helping his team win.

Maybe Bledsoe was also upset about not getting a renegotiation-and-extension (which Phoenix was right to deny). Either way, this explanation is good enough for me.