The NBA trade deadline fell on Thursday afternoon, and Goran Dragic may have had his wish granted in the form of a one-way ticket out of Phoenix.
According to Mike Prada of SB Nation, the Phoenix Suns have decided to send Dragic to South Beach so he can play for the Miami Heat. The 28-year-old guard has expressed discontent with his current team, according to a report from the Associated Press.
"I don't trust them anymore," Dragic said after the Suns practice on Wednesday.
The Associated Press reported that Dragic would not re-sign with the team after he became a free agent, which would happen after this season. He expressed that he didn't like "standing in the corner" and wanted to join a team where he can "be a point guard, like in the past I was my whole life."
"To be a point guard, to run the team and have the ball in my hands and try to make plays for others," Dragic said. "That's who I am."
Prada reported that Dragic enjoyed a breakout season last year in Phoenix; he was named third team All-NBA and averaged a career-high 20.3 points per game. Although his numbers have decreased this season, the Associated Press noted that he often found himself playing alongside Eric Bledsoe and Isaiah Thomas, but in off guard or on the wings roles.
"Last year was great. This year it's different," Dragic said. "Standing in the corner, it's not my game."
Prada reported that one of Dragic's preferred destinations to take his NBA career to the next level included the city of Miami. Other teams that expressed interest in Dragic, according to Sam Amick of USA Today, included the Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks.
"Any team that trades for Dragic certainly would want to know whether he's willing to sign with them this summer before doing a deal, as the prospect of giving up the necessary assets only to lose him in the summertime is certainly not tenable," Amick wrote. "Dragic, who is represented by BDA Sports Management, would strongly prefer to play for a playoff contender."
Dragic may have gotten what he wanted, considering that the Heat are the No. 8 seed in the Eastern Conference playoff picture according to Prada.
"Adding Dragic to a core that already includes Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and upstart center Hassan Whiteside would appear to make Miami a formidable sleeper in the postseason," Prada wrote.
The Associated Press reported that Dragic first came to Phoenix after the Suns traded Steve Nash to the Lakers back in 2012. While he is moving on Miami, the Slovenian expressed "no ill will to anyone in the Suns' organization."
"I love the city, but it's just reached that point in my career where it's better for me and my family to move on," he said.
According to Amick, Dragic wanted "to run his own team with the kind of freedom and support given to someone such as Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors," hence the departure from Phoenix.