Chris Paul didn’t sign with Spurs over concern Gregg Popovich wouldn’t be coaching for much longer
Rewinding time just a few months ago and Chris Paul was mired in a crucial decision — to stay with the L.A. Clippers or possibly venture into making a move for what seemed like a deeply interested San Antonio Spurs.
The Spurs would have had to move heaven and high water to make a move for Paul, offering nearly $30 million less than the Clippers could in a four-year offer.
Sam Amick of USA TODAY Sports noted in his podcast that one of the reasons Paul did not sign with the Spurs this offseason was the growing concern that head coach Gregg Popovich would only be coaching for a couple of more years. Former teammate Jamal Crawford, a guest of the podcast, concurred.
“There’s a moment there where Chris (Paul) is talking about his free agency options, but he basically says, I’m paraphrasing that everything he’s heard is that Pop is basically only gonna be around for a couple of more years in terms of coaching, and that was concern for a guy like Chris. I think he had a comment about how the Spurs just aren’t the Spurs without Pop.”
Paul ultimately signed with the Houston Rockets and fellow All-Star James Harden, forming one of the most feared backcourt tandems in the league.
Whether his concern was needed or not, he wound up in a great situation playing for an offensive genius like Mike D’Antoni, finding himself atop the Western Conference with a 19-4 record and a perfect 9-0 record when he’s on the floor.
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