Chris Paul is arguably one of the best Point Guards in the NBA, he’s definitely Top Five hands down. Paul only has ONE more year left on his contract, that year being THIS year. What team wouldn’t want a Top Five PG??
Last season we were able to see 3 ways that the whole “1 year left” can go, there are two examples that are at the forefront of my mind. Those being the Carmelo Anthony way, the Deron Williams way, or the Miami Heat way. The Hornets are at an extremely important crossroads; do you give in to Paul’s demands and not get top talent in return(Melo) or do you jettison him off for what works best for your Franchise a la Utah Jazz & Deron Williams. Utah didn’t give Williams a chance, they were proactive and sent D-Wil packing. Denver was stuck, they either accepted where Melo wanted to go and take what they could get or let him leave and get nothing in return.
What makes this even more interesting is Paul’s alleged willingness or lack there of to re-sign should he be traded to a destination not of his liking. How would you feel if you were to make the trade for Paul knowing that he could just leave via Free Agency this summer, if you didn’t have the type of talent that would entice him to stay…is it worth it?
There supposed Front Runners in the Chris Paul Sweepstakes are the Warriors, Clippers, and the Knicks. The Knicks having the upper-hand in my opinion seeing that they are his #1 choice and all they’d have to do is wait this season out. As for the Warriors, the Hornets would certainly want the young Stephen Curry. Would you be willing to part with him without the assurance that Paul would stay? If he did land in Golden State and left the season afterwards, you’re set back even further with a hole at one of the most important spots on a basketball team. To add to this soap opera, Paul has said he’d like to play with Chandler again. He’s never said getting Chandler would KEEP him in one place, just that he’d like to reunite with his former teammate. Chandler also wants to get PAID, deservingly so after anchoring the Dallas defense during their Title Run. Do you acquiesce to Pauls requests?
The Clippers are the rare team in all of this with a WEALTH of young talent to offer as well as good draft picks due to their poor track record. Will the Clippers get in their OWN way here and hold on to one of the pieces that the Hornets REQUIRE to make this deal happen? The reason I believe the Clippers have an upper-hand over the Warriors is simple: Blake Griffin. They have a bonafide Star (in the making) who happens to be a “Big.” The Warriors current star is Monta Ellis and he’s a guard, an undersized one at that.
Add to this mix are a few teams who are more than willing to “Rent Paul” for a season, this saga should continue to intrigue us all. Will Paul be traded before the season, before the trade deadline, or not at all? Chime in with your thoughts below!!