Rumor: Rockets hope to sign Chris Paul to long-term deal
The Houston Rockets made a major splash this past offseason by acquiring All-Star point guard Chris Paul from the Los Angeles Clippers to pair up with their other star guard in James Harden.
It was a huge risk given that Paul is in the final year of his deal with a chance to hit the open market next summer in free agency. However, the Rockets hold high hopes of being able to sign him a lucrative long-term deal next July, according to Zach Lowe of ESPN.
They are underdogs, maybe big ones, but Morey has long promised that he will go for it if he thinks Houston has even a 5 percent chance of winning a ring. He will hunt likely LeBron this summer, per league sources, and hopes to sign Paul to another long-term deal. With Clint Capela and Trevor Ariza headed toward free agency, just bringing this group back could vault Houston well into the luxury tax. Tilman Fertitta, the team’s new owner, has said he would pay the tax to preserve a contender.
Houston will be in an intriguing position next summer with much of its long-term future riding on how things unfold during that time. Along with Paul, two other key players in Trevor Ariza and Clint Capela are both set to hit the open market. There is also the expected pursuit of LeBron James that could heighten things even further.
Almost all of this may hinge on the Rockets’ ability to sign Paul to a new deal, which will be priority No.1. That said, the team has already made a strong impression on the All-Star point guard with the start it has had to this season holding the best record in the league at 25-5 through the first 30 games played behind one of the league’s most explosive offenses. Much of that was done without the services of Paul for the first several weeks of the season.
The Rockets’ chances of signing Paul will in all likelihood lie in how they perform in the playoffs with a deep playoff run. If they can prove to be a legitimate challenger to the Golden State Warriors while possibly contend for an NBA title, it would all but cement their chances of keeping him under contract beyond this season.
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