Deandre Ayton shouted out the motto that will forever link him and Kelly Oubre Jr.

"That's my 'Valley Boy,' you know what it is," said Ayton while holding up their hand sign.

Ayton said he's happy his "Valley Boyz" brother wound up in Golden State after the Chris Paul trade landed him in Oklahoma City, but Oubre said he hasn't heard from Ayton since everything went down.

"It's kind of shocked me he hadn't reached out to me, but at the end of the day, I understand, man," Oubre said Friday during a Zoom media call. "He has to continue with the flow of his life and the situation that he's in. I haven't really got to luxury to say that we're still in communication or anything like that, but I wish them all the best."

Oubre said Ayton "was like a brother" to him. Called it a "big brother-little brother relationship" and admitted the two always butted heads because they're "fire signs."

Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton (22) and forward Kelly Oubre Jr. (3) battle for the rebound during the first half of an NBA preseason basketball game against the Denver Nuggets, Monday, Oct. 14, 2019, in Phoenix.

Ayton's zodiac sign is Leo (born July 23) while Oubre's a Sagittarius (born December 9).

On Thursday, Ayton was asked about the other side of the Paul trade that sent a future first-round pick Ricky Rubio, Ty Jerome, Jalen Lecque and his friend, Oubre, to Oklahoma City last month. 

He shouted out Oubre first. Then talked about how happy he was for his former teammate to join the Warriors – and more.

This comes after Oubre criticized Suns owner Robert Sarver in praising Golden State's owner Joseph S. Lacob on "Damon, Batto & Kolsky"  on 95.7 The Game in San Francisco last month.

"I can play for an owner, somebody who actually cares about the organization and not just the perception of the organization on the media end of it," Oubre said. "It's all about the foundation for me, man. You have a beautiful foundation, can build a beautiful (future)."

On Thursday, Warriors center Marquese Chriss had choice words about the Suns when asked about Oubre being in Golden State. A first-round pick in 2016, Chriss also played for Phoenix before being traded to Houston going into the 2018-19 season.

"I think it's good for him not to have to be over there no more," Chriss said. "Things are a little wild how they handle things. I feel for him being in the situation that he was in 'cause that's kind of how I got traded." 

Phoenix and Golden State are slated to face each other for the first time in this shortened 72-game regular season Jan. 15 at PHX Arena.  

On Friday, Oubre initially declined to talk in a polite manner about his time in Phoenix when asked to summarize his two seasons jwith the team.

Oubre averaged at career-high 18.7 points a game last season for the Suns. 

"I won't go back on anything in the past, but I'm blessed to continue to create a new life here," said Oubre, who back in his first season expressed a desire to finish his career in Phoenix. "I'm just going to continue to get better each and every day like I've been doing. Like I said earlier, I'm just forming to the situation to be the best I can potentially be and unlock my full potential."

Oubre continued by saying he "appreciates the opportunities" he's been given in the NBA as he started his career in Washington after being drafted 15th overall by Atlanta in 2015.

Then later in the press conference, Oubre was asked about his connection with Ayton, Mikal Bridges and Cam Johnson, three players who were close to him and if any of them had reached out since the trade.

That's when Oubre revealed Ayton hadn't contacted him, but said he understood why.

"I wish them all the best," Oubre said. "Like I told them on my way out, take advantage of this opportunity. Continue to get better and just enjoy the process because you learn from the people that come before you. So I hope they learn from my situation and they just continue to be mindful that this is a league, this is a business and they have to continue work their butts off so they can perform to their highest ability."

On an episode of Showtime's All The Smoke with Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson that posted Wednesday, Oubre talked several topics that included seeing Devin Booker "put in the work" while he was his teammate in Phoenix and wanting to "eliminate all doubts about how great" Golden State is as an organization.

Oubre was also once again asked to explain why he didn't play in the bubble after having knee surgery March 3. Suns head coach Monty Williams said the injury had completely healed, General Manager James Jones was hoping Oubre would play in the bubble, but Oubre didn't. 

Oubre concluded by saying, "I would rather sacrifice me wanting to hoop so bad than me being out here rehabbing to get right." 

Answering rapid fire questions towards the end of the podcast, Oubre was asked his all-fashion starting five.

Being he's known for his fashion sense, Oubre named Jordan Clarkson (Utah Jazz), James Johnson (Dallas Mavericks) and Russell Westbrook (Washington Wizards) first.

Then paused for a second.

"I got to get a big fella in there, man," Oubre said.

Guess who?

"I'm going to put Deandre Ayton in there," Oubre said. "He's a fresh 7-footer. He just don't be carrying enough to be dressing up for games and stuff. 

Oubre's last choice was Booker's buddy, D'Angelo Russell of the Minnesota Timberwolves.



By Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic