DeAndre Ayton and Suns owner Robert Sarver have met this week amid an ugly contract feud — grabbing a drink together at a fancy spot in Arizona … TMZ Sports has learned.
We’ve obtained photos of the two at Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort on Monday … and witnesses tell us the guys appeared to be in talks over a new deal for Ayton.
One witness says Ayton was comparing his game and his athleticism to another player during the conversation with Sarver … adding that the talks seemed to be “all business.”
If you’re not familiar, Ayton — the #1 overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft — is seeking a new contract in Phoenix … but has been upset over how the offers have been so far.
In fact, Ayton said Tuesday — less than a day after the meeting with Sarver at the resort — the entire situation has been “disappointing” … particularly after seeing other players around the league, including Nuggets wing Michael Porter Jr., get flashy new deals.
“I love Phoenix, but I’m really disappointed we haven’t really gotten a deal done yet,” Ayton told reporters. “We were two wins away from winning a championship and I just really want to be respected, to be honest.”
“To be respected like my peers are being respected by their teams.”
A witness tells us Ayton showed up at the resort before Sarver … and seemed perturbed, looking stoic and glancing at his phone often.
No word yet on if Monday’s meeting ultimately moved things in the right direction for both parties … but the sides have until Oct. 18 to complete Ayton’s rookie extension deal.