3 Ways The Rockets Can Rid Themselves Of Chris Paul
Veteran point guard Chris Paul has served just a two-year stint as a member of the Houston Rockets after making his way to Texas by way of a sign-and-trade with the Los Angeles Clippers. Since then, Paul has no doubt helped the Rockets perform better while the surging Western Conference franchise has also remained under the supervision of NBA MVP and perennial All-Star guard James Harden, who apparently can no longer exist alongside the seasoned signal caller.
As a result of some recent reports, the Rockets will now continue to seek out potential trade scenarios involving Paul, who isn’t getting any younger. Because the 33-year-old Paul is due an average of $40 million in each of the next three seasons, which also features a $44 million pay dayin 2021-2022 when he will be 36 years old, trading him away for some real value will be no easy task.
Although there is still definitely something left in the tank, Paul is owed quite a bit of money going forward — especially as a result of the 2021-22 campaign — in addition to the notion that the longtime NBA point guard has unfortunately become an oft-injured player over the years. Pairing his immense salary with his injury history surely won’t get Paul out of Houston anytime time but one can dream…
Los Angeles Lakers
It is no secret that Los Angeles Lakers superstar forward LeBron James loves playing alongside his closest friends. While making this quite evident during his days in South Beach as a member of the Miami Heat alongside future Hall of Fame shooting guard Dwyane Wade, James once again has the chance to build a serious contender in Los Angeles, thanks to the recent addition of former New Orleans Pelicans big man Anthony Davis.
With the tandem of James and Davis now officially in place, the Lakers could use a veteran point guard to run the show on the West Coast. With a seasoned signal caller in Chris Paul being no stranger to the city following his time spent as a member of the Los Angeles Clippers, it could become a seamless transition for both the player and the team — money aside of course.
The Lakers are still looking to add another superstar via free agency, though there will only be spots for a small amount of high-caliber players. While the Lakers have already been linked to Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard, Charlotte Hornets point guard Kemba Walker and Boston Celtics poing guard Kyrie Irving, the once heralded Western Conference franchise still needs to shed some salary cap space in order to take on another max contract this offseason.
If the Lakers are able to do so but are unable to draw yet another superstar through the open market, perhaps James’ old friend in Paul could become a viable option down the road. However, the Lakers do not have much to trade after just recently acquiring the services of the aforementioned Davis from the Pelicans.
New York Knicks
The New York Knicks have struggled mightily over the course of the last few seasons while the 2019-20 offseason was supposed to be the one that helped the Eastern Conference franchise turn things around in a hurry. However, Golden State Warriors superstar forward Kevin Durant will likely miss all of next season due to a torn Achilles tendon, Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving appears primed to head across town to the rival Brooklyn Nets and Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard could be staying north of the border or heading out West to join the Los Angeles Clippers.
Just like that, the Knicks may be out of free agent options when all is said and done. A notion that already appeared evident, the Knicks reportedly explored a possible trade for former New Orleans Pelicans big man and Los Angeles Lakers newcomer Anthony Davis, which seemed like an insurance policy to draw one or two free agents this offseason. Because Davis is off the market and free agency may become a tough go-round for the lowly Knicks, perhaps acquiring Houston Rockets point guard Chris Paul could spark this young team that could use a veteran or two to help ease the transition into a new era.
Because the Knicks have both young assets and money to spend, Paul may ultimately become one of the few options that New York has to improve its roster this summer. Although this probably isn’t what Knicks fans want to hear, nothing has been set in stone just yet as at least some hope remains with the 2019 NBA Draft now on the immediate horizon.
Emerging as a legitimate threat in the Eastern Conference a season ago, the Brooklyn Nets are no doubt on a serious upswing. Now attempting — whether on purpose or not — to steal some of the thunder from the crosstown rival New York Knicks, the Nets have a few options that could be much better in the long run than acquiring current Houston Rockets point guard Chris Paul. However, Paul could ultimately become a nice piece to add alongside another superstar player that is signed via the free agent market.
Specifically at the point guard position, the Nets have been linked to both Boston Celtics signal caller Kyrie Irving, who is reportedly leaning toward making his way to Brooklyn, and Charlotte Hornets signal caller Kemba Walker, who is originally from The Bronx. On the other hand, if the Nets are unable to replace soon-to-be free agent point guard D’Angelo Russell with one of these two players, perhaps Paul could become a target for the team’s front office.
Although plausible due to the Nets’ urgency to remain hot well into the 2019-20 campaign, this is probably a highly unlikely scenario compared to the options surrounding the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks. Even though the Nets will remain active alongside many other franchises this summer, this is the NBA after all as things can change in a hurry throughout the offseason — which might even be an understatement at this point in time.
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