With LeBron James going home to Cleveland this summer, and most recently Kevin Garnett returning to the Minnesota Timberwolves, homecomings seem to be the newest trend in the NBA. Players such as Garnett are looking to return to the franchise they started with as they round out their career, and Dallas Mavericks forward Amar’e Stoudemire could be the latest to go in that direction.
According to Howard Beck of Bleacher Report, Stoudemire, who was waived by the New York Knicks last week, will welcome a return to the Phoenix Suns this offseason, the team Stoudemire spent the best years of his career with.
The NBA trade deadline turned into homecoming day, with Kevin Garnett returning to Minnesota and Tayshaun Prince going back to Detroit. Could an Amar’e Stoudemire-Phoenix reunion be next? Perhaps. Stoudemire joined the Dallas Mavericks last week after being waived by the Knicks, but he’ll be a free agent again in July, and sources say he would welcome a return to Phoenix, where he spent his first eight seasons. Stoudemire loves the city, and his creaky knees could benefit from a reunion with the Suns’ renowned medical staff. Whether the Suns would reciprocate the interest is unclear. But the Suns could use a scoring big man, and team officials could certainly use a PR boost after trading the popular Goran Dragic to Miami last week.
As of right now there is no indication if the interest is mutual, and we probably won’t hear a peep out of Phoenix until the offseason as they are in the midst of an intense hunt for the Western Conference’s eight and final playoff spot. Phoenix is currently 2.5 games back of Oklahoma City for the 8th seed.
Stoudemire played in Phoenix for the first eight years of his career, and was an essential piece on some fantastic Suns teams along with legendary point guard Steve Nash. Stoudemire was a five-time All-Star in Phoenix, and had the best season of his career with the Suns in 2007-2008, averaging 25.2 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game.
Hopefully for Stoudemire, inking a deal with Phoenix this summer can help to extend his career. Ever since becoming a member of the New York Knicks in 2010-11, Stoudemire has dealt with shoddy knees. His availability over the years has been sporadic, and he’s unable to play in back-to-back games due to ailments. The Suns have a medical staff that is renowned for the fabulous job it does of taking care of their players bodies, and hopefully Stoudemire can be a beneficiary of that medical magic as he writes the final chapter of his career.
Stoudemire is averaging 11.9 points and 6.6 rebounds per game this season. He is 32-years-old.