Stoudemire isn’t really looking for a long-term relationship right now, y’know?
Look, maybe if Amar’e Stoudemire was another All-Star power forward with another set of circumstances, things would be different. But this is who he is right now and this is what he’s going through, and with free agency just on the horizon, Stoudemire isn’t looking for anything serious from the Suns. Commitment weirds him out a little bit. From Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic:
Stoudemire said he wants to shelve contract-extension talks until after the season, when he also will have to make a decision about opting out of the final year of the deal, which would pay him $17.7 million. He must decide by June 30. “I just don’t want the distraction,” Stoudemire said. “I don’t want to distract the team right now. We’re playing well. So in the off-season, we can talk about extensions.”
Stoudemire still does not talk as optimistically about a future in Phoenix as he once did. “Whatever situation I end up going to is going to work out the best for me,” Stoudemire said.
It seems like a foregone conclusion at this point that Stoudemire won’t be in Phoenix next season, leaving Steve Nash as the final piece of the engaging “Seven-Seconds-or-Less” core that has dissolved piece by piece. The spirit of those teams may be more or less intact with Steve Nash, the man who was and still is the system, still in a Suns uniform, but Amar’e’s departure would only be the latest and most obvious sign that the dream is dead.