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One of the biggest items that the Suns needed to do this offseason was to make sure they have payroll flexibility for the future and they passed that with flying colors. If they don't add on any payroll, Phoenix will have about $15 million to spend next offseason.

The big name in next year's free agent class that every Suns fan on the planet wants is Oklahoma City Thunder shooting guard James Harden. Harden attended Arizona State for two years and has voiced being interested in playing in Phoenix, although he has taken those comments back a bit and said he would like to remain with a championship contender in OKC.

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The biggest question during the NBA offseason wasn't about where a certain free agent would end up signing, but what uniform Dwight Howard was going to end up wearing come next season. Early on, it appeared as thought the Nets were the heavy favorites, but a blockbuster deal fell through and the Magic were back at square one of having to deal with their disgruntled superstar.

There were whispers last week that Howard was set to join the Lakers in Los Angeles. Of course this wasn't a new development so I was included on the long list of those who were skeptical of a trade getting done, but this time around it came true and Howard joins up with Kobe Bryant in LA to form a dream team that might be the favorite to win the whole thing next season.

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Just weeks after dealing Robin Lopez to New Orleans, the Suns have found their guy to backup Marcin Gortat at center. On Friday, the Suns and Jermaine O'Neal agreed on a one-year deal, that will pay the 16-year veteran $1.35 million next season.

Coming straight out of high school, O'Neal has had a very solid NBA career. Even with getting less playing time in recent seasons, JON career wise has averaged more than 13 points and seven rebounds per game. A six-time All-Star, O'Neal's best years came in Indiana where he was considered one of the best power forwards in the game at the time.

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Heading into this offseason, the Suns franchise was at a crossroads. The front office could continue going down the path of being a marginal playoff team and have a roster made up of veterans at the ends of their careers or they could go the younger route and start to rebuild in order to be good for future years to come. Luckily for Suns fans, the organization decided to go with the latter rather than the former.

What a difference a year can make. At right around this time last year, the Suns had an older roster highlighted by Grant Hill and Steve Nash in their late 30's and Michael Redd in his early 30's, but with his best days clearly behind him. Their average age was right around 28.5, one of the highest in the league and an extremely poor number to have for a borderline playoff team.

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After being one of the busiest teams during this offseason, the Suns roster heading into next year is pretty much set. Phoenix will more than likely have a starting five of Goran Dragic, Shannon Brown, Michael Beasley, Luis Scola and Marcin Gortat with some quality talent coming off the bench for Alvin Gentry.

The only real remaining hole on the current roster is the backup center position after the trade of Robin Lopez to New Orleans a few weeks back. Channing Frye has experience playing the five, but there is no guarantee that he will be ready for the start of the season after having offseason shoulder surgery. Scola could spell Gortat as well, but he is best suited to play the four.

The Suns front office will more than likely look to address that situation with the start of training camp not too far away. Here is a list of my top five options who I believe the Suns should look at for the backup center spot.

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The proposed three-team deal between the Suns, Timberwolves and Hornets appears to be officially done, according to the Associated Press. The multiplayer trade, which was first reported yesterday, has several pieces involved.

Center Robin Lopez, forward Hakim Warrick and cash will be headed to New Orleans. In return, the Suns will receive guard/forward Wes Johnson from Minnesota and a first round pick from the T'Wolves that will more than likely be lottery protected. The Timberwolves will get the contract of Brad Miller, who is set to retire, guard Jerome Dyson and two second round picks from New Orleans.

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Just days after retaining Eric Gordon and keeping him from becoming a member of the Suns, the New Orleans Hornets are trying to do more damage to the Suns roster once again. New Orleans is looking to add center Robin Lopez to their roster in a possible sign and trade with Phoenix, according to Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski.

Heading into the offseason, the Suns front office made it clear that it was a priority to bring back Lopez. Suns president Lon Babby even came out and said that they would match any offer from another team, but Portland has been the only other team that has showed interest in Lopez up until this report came out.

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P.J. Tucker's dream of returning to the NBA has come true. The former Texas Longhorn and the Suns agreed to a two-year contract with partial guarantees on the first year of the deal. If he sticks around with Phoenix all year long, Tucker can earn a second-year player minimum of $762,195.

Tucker played on the Suns summer-league team where he averaged 5.8 points and 6.2 rebounds in 21.2 minutes per game in five contests in Vegas. Tucker became a favorite of Suns summer coach Dan Majerle as "Thunder Dan" said he loved P.J. for his hard play and doing everything you ask of him.

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Early on in this offseason, the Suns made it clear that getting Eric Gordon was their number one option in free agency. For a brief time it looked as though Gordon was going to be in a Suns uniform one way or another, but a sign and trade never materialized with New Orleans and Gordon was officially out as an option for the Suns two guard position.

Phoenix's front office then turned its attention to O.J. Mayo and Courtney Lee as options. After brief flirtation with both, the Suns decided that Mayo and Lee were too rich and wanted long-term deals that would have jeopardized their payroll flexibility. So the Suns turned to Plan D and signed Shannon Brown to a two-year, $7 million deal on Friday with half of the second year being guaranteed.

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To the surprise of no one, the New Orleans Hornets matched the Phoenix Suns max offer on Eric Gordon on Saturday afternoon meaning that the shooting guard will stay in the Big Easy at least for the time being. It also means that the Suns still have a huge hole at the shooting guard position which has existed ever since Jason Richardson was dealt to Orlando a few years back.

The remaining options left available on the market are no where close to Gordon's skill and overall talent level, but they can still help the Suns win games next season and well into the future.

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