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The Morris twins should feel embarrassed they let the Suns play them

There are a number of lessons in the tale of the Morrii. Most athletes already understand them.

The Morris twins are furious that Marcus (the lesser basketball player) was traded by the Suns to the Pistons in July as Phoenix chased cap space to lure LaMarcus Aldridge. On Wednesday, Markieff Morris (the better basketball player) demanded a trade, claiming that the Suns had acted unprofessionally toward the twins.

The grievance is not terribly justifiable. Trades happen! It is a fact of business in pro sports. When you sign a contract with a team, you are consenting to potentially being traded at any point over the life of your contract. This is part of the bargain.

It appears that the Morrii were blindsided by this fact. From the story-breaking Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer:

"I'm a grown man," Marcus Morris said. "I can stand on my own. I play on my own. It's just the disrespectful side. What we did for the Suns, the pay cuts we took and for them to trade me without consent is what made me more disappointed and is what made me more upset."

Aha, there's the source of the anger from the Morrii: they took small, early deals to stay together, then the Suns broke them up anyway.

The frustration is understandable on some level. Marcus didn't actually take a discount to stay in Phoenix -- his four-year, $20 million early extension was almost assuredly above his on-court value. The general feeling has been that Markieff took a discount in a package deal. He took $32 million over four years in an early extension signed a year ago. Had he waited and hit restricted free agency in 2015, he'd easily be an eight-figure player. He actually might have gotten maxed out by one of the league's more desperate teams.

So, Markieff potentially gave up $38 million over four years so that Phoenix would overpay his twin brother by a million or two per season and keep the Morrii together. This was a massive mistake, because the Suns had no obligation to keep Marcus around. Even if the Suns front office pinky swore to keep the brothers together -- highly unlikely -- that sort of promise is worth the paper it's written on, which is to say it's worth nothing at all. The NBA has very specific rules on who can receive a no-trade clause and the Morrii don't come close to meeting the requirements. They had to know this could happen.

If not? Surprise! The team is not your friend. It is a business. It has decision-makers who care about the financial health and performance of the business infinitely more than they care about your interests. The Morris twins' first mistake was thinking the Suns actually cared about what the Morris twins wanted. The Morris twins' second mistake was allowing that false belief to transmute into a discount benefiting the team. Do not sign for less than your market value. This is what can happen!

(The twins probably also thought signing on the cheap would endear them to Phoenix fans. Fans have turned fully against the Morrii, in part because of the felony assault charges hanging over the twins. Fans are fickle and will almost always side with the laundry. Another lesson learned.)

It's easy to understand why the Morris twins are upset: they feel betrayed. They (and their agent) should also feel embarrassed that they got played so badly by the Suns. It's a regrettable situation for which they really only have themselves to blame.

Markieff will probably get traded now, but the odds of any team reuniting the Morrii again is slim to none. The dream of partnership is over for the Morris twins, and they now face 48 months of lower-than-they-should-be paychecks.

That must be a viciously cold splash of water. No wonder they are so mad.

SB Nation presents: How the Morris twins pushed each other to achieve greatness