The Phoenix Suns didn’t end up keeping sixth overall pick.
They instead traded it to Minnesota for Dario Saric and the No. 11 pick — which the Timberwolves used to select North Carolina forward Cameron Johnson for the Suns in Thursday’s NBA draft in Brooklyn, New York.
Johnson wasn’t considered a lottery pick, which might explain why he wasn’t in New York with many of the other top draft prospects.
With the No. 6 pick the Suns ended up drafting Texas Tech sophomore guard Jarrett Culver, who will take off to Minnesota.
This was all part of a busy day for the Suns, who earlier traded TJ Warren and the No. 32 overall pick (second pick in second round) to Indiana for cash. Phoenix selected Stanford’s KZ Okpala with that pick.
ESPN first reported both trades.
The Suns then made a third transaction in which they traded their protected first-round pick they received from Milwaukee in the Eric Bledsoe deal to the Boston Celtics for the No. 24 pick and center Aron Baynes, a league source confirmed.
With the pick obtained from the Philadelphia 76ers and Boston, the Suns selected Virginia guard Ty Jerome.
Suns general manager James Jones can’t talk about the selection of Johnson or Jerome because they’re not Phoenix’s original draft picks and the two players technically belong to Minnesota and Philadelphia, respectfully.
Suns officials said the team will not be able to speak about the trades either until they become official July 6, when the league year begins.
The Suns also canceled Monday’s introductory news conference for their draft picks.
Phoenix had a need at point guard, but chose Johnson, who shot a sizzling 45.7% from 3 in his senior year. The 23-year-old measured out to 6 feet, 8-ƒ inches and 205 pounds at the NBA combine in May.
The Suns didn’t address their need at point guard, but the franchise can do that in free agency. Phoenix has three point guards in Elie Okobo and De’Anthony Melton, whom were rookies last season, and Tyler Johnson, who is more of a combo guard.
Trading Warren will clear up some cap space as he’s due $35 million over the next three years. The 6-foot-8 forward was Phoenix’s second-leading scorer at 18 points a game, but only played 43 games.
Warren missed Phoenix’s final 33 games with what the Suns called right ankle soreness, but he described it as a bone bruise, which could take two to three months to heal.
The Suns traded their second-round pick, but it falls in line with Jones’ earlier comments that he’s looking for players, not prospects.
As for Daric, the Suns are getting a stretch four who at 6-foot-10 is a career 35.8% shooter from 3 in his three NBA seasons. Daric started his career at Philadelphia, but was traded to Minnesota this past season as part of the Jimmy Butler deal.