Chris Paul trade talks heating up

There is a ton of stuff out there today regarding Chris Paul, and it does not appear he is going to get his wish to be traded to the New York Knicks.

So let’s get right to it:

_ David Aldridge of “A league source involved in the discussions said late Tuesday night that the Lakers are still among the teams the New Orleans Hornets are having advanced discussions with on a potential trade of Paul, the four-time All-Star guard who is seeking a trade after spending his first six seasons in the Big Easy. The Lakers, Clippers, Warriors and Celtics currently have a leg up on other teams that are trying to acquire Paul. … The Lakers’ potential offer would send either center Andrew Bynum or forward Pau Gasol along with forward Lamar Odom to the Hornets for Paul. The Clippers are offering a package, according to sources, that includes guard Eric Bledsoe, forward Al-Farouq Aminu, center Chris Kaman and the unprotected 2012 first-round pick the Clippers currently possess from the Timberwolves. Another source was adamant Tuesday that the Clippers have not included rising star guard Eric Gordon in any package for Paul, preferring to keep Gordon and Blake Griffin together to team with Paul in their own “SuperFriends” team like the Heat. The Warriors are offering a package involving their young star guard Stephen Curry and their first-round pick Klay Thompson. The Celtics’ package, according to a source, centers on guard Rajon Rondo, along with the rights to first-rounder MarShon Brooks, forward Avery Bradley and a 2012 first-round pick from the Clippers that is protected through the first 10 picks of the Draft. While the Hornets could conceivably make a deal with any of those teams individually, it’s more likely that each of them will require a third team getting involved to get the Hornets the combination of young players and Draft picks they’re asking for in exchange for Paul. And the fluidity of the situation, with the Hornets looking for as much as they possibly can get for Paul, makes establishing a single frontrunner difficult.

_ Sam Amick of “Sources told that the Hornets have homed in on the Clippers, Warriors and Celtics as possible trade partners. While it remains unclear which team leads the sprint for Paul’s services, the notion that he could be dealt before the regular season starts on Dec. 25 — if not the start of training camp on Friday — has never appeared more likely. But while Yahoo! reported that Paul indicated the Clippers and Warriors could increase their odds of landing him long-term if they signed free-agent center Tyson Chandler, a source with knowledge of the situation said Golden State had not received that message. The Clippers, meanwhile, have no interest in signing Chandler because of their plan to re-sign restricted-free-agent center DeAndre Jordan. The Lakers, Mavericks and Rockets are also pushing hard for Paul but appear to be behind in the running, in large part because Hornets general manager Dell Demps is coveting the sort of young pieces those teams lack. While a source close to Paul confirmed that he would want to play with the Lakers long-term, there is concern on the Hornets’ side that the possible acquisition of center Andrew Bynum would be problematic given the presence of Emeka Okafor. According to sources close to the talks, the Warriors’ offer includes third-year guard Stephen Curry, rookie guard Klay Thompson and second-year forward Ekpe Udoh. Golden State would pay a hefty price on top of losing those players because its plan would involve waiving center Andris Biedrins via the new amnesty clause (his deal has three years and $27 million remaining) and signing Chandler to a four-year deal that would likely start in the neighborhood of $15 million annually.

_ Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports: “Three teams in pursuit of Paul believe the Hornets will push for final offers – and make a decision – by the start of training camp on Friday. … The Clippers’ and Warriors’ packages are the most intriguing to New Orleans general manager Dell Demps, league sources said. So far, talks between the Hornets and Los Angeles Lakers have gathered little, if any, traction, sources said. The Boston Celtics remain aggressive in their pursuit of Paul and held discussions with New Orleans on Tuesday. As New Orleans prepared to make a trade that could clear significantly more salary cap space for them, Hornets officials have reached out to see if they could still get involved in contract negotiations with free-agent center Nene and point guard J.J. Barea, league sources said. Nene’s bidding could be pushing upwards of $14 million a season, with the Nuggets re-emerging as a serious suitor to keep him, sources said. The New Jersey Nets, Rockets and Indiana Pacers have yet to show a willingness to spend $14 million-$15 million a year to sign Nene, and that could ultimately leave him destined to return to the Nuggets. Still, many teams have yet to extend their best offers in free-agent talks. “Dell has to figure out what he wants,” one team official in the talks said. “Does he want to rebuild, get players to flip [in other trades], or just fit guys into their roster. It’s up to New Orleans to decide the package they want now. No one wants this to extend into training camp – not them, or us.”

_ John Reid of the New Orleans Times-Picayune: “The Chris Paul era in New Orleans could be ending as early as this weekend if Hornets General Manager Dell Demps can find adequate value in trading the four-time All-Star point guard. Sources said the Hornets have had preliminary trade discussions with the Lakers, Clippers, Warriors, Mavericks, Celtics, Knicks and Magic. And even more teams could enter the Paul Sweepstakes before it’s all over. The Hornets had been listening to offers since last week, but they are proceeding more intensely after Paul indicated in Monday’s meeting with Demps he is not interested in signing a long-term extension to remain in New Orleans, sources said. … It hasn’t been ruled out that more meetings could occur between Hornets brass and Paul. But for the second consecutive day, Paul on Tuesday did not participate in volunteer workouts with his teammates at the Alario Center. … Hornets backup point guard Jarrett Jack said he wants Paul to remain with the Hornets, but he’s not surprised by the trade rumors. “Right now this is the hot topic, and this is something every player goes through when he’s in the last year of his deal,’’ said Jack, one Paul’s closest friends. “When (Oklahoma City Thunder forward) Kevin Durant is in the last year of his deal and he hasn’t signed an extension yet, he’s going to go through it. If (Bulls point guard) Derrick Rose doesn’t sign an early extension, he’s going to go through it. All of these top-caliber players are going to go through it, it’s the end of their contract. When they feel it’s necessary to sign an extension or play it out through free agency or whatever, that’s the process you go through.”

_ Marc Stein and Chris Broussard of “Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and Los Angeles clippers guard Eric Gordon are the two players New Orleans has pursued the hardest in the Hornets’ fast-moving search for a workable Chris Paul trade, according to sources close to the talks. But the Hornets continue to meet with resistance from the Warriors and the Clippers on Curry and Gordon, sources told, because both teams are reluctant to part with their young backcourt cornerstones with no assurance from Paul that he will stay beyond this season. Sources said that the Hornets have actually been trying to convince the Warriors to part with Curry since before last season’s trade deadline in February. But the Warriors could only stomach the inclusion of Curry if they knew Paul would extend his contract as part of the trade or at least commit to invoking his option for the 2012-13 season. Golden State has still received no such promises. The Clippers, meanwhile, have been aggressive in their pursuit of Paul, but sources told’s Ramona Shelburne that neither Gordon nor restricted free agent center DeAndre Jordan have been offered to New Orleans. Said one source close to the situation of Gordon’s inclusion: “That’s a deal-breaker (for the Clippers).”

_ Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle: “Stephen Curry has heard all of the rumors, the newest being that the Warriors could ship him along with Ekpe Udoh and Klay Thompson to New Orleans for Chris Paul. The scuttle, however, doesn’t seem to bother Curry. Paul is “a guy from my hometown, we’ve worked out a lot and I definitely respect his game,” Curry said. “He wants to get to New York eventually or whatever he wants to do. That’s CP’s deal. I’m here and happy in Golden State. There’s nothing that’s putting me on edge.”



  1. Matthew says

    The Hornets should just keep him this year and trade him in the offseason. Yes, they could risk losing him and get nothing in return, however, is he really going to leave $30M on the table and sign with a different team? I doubt it. The Hornets could then sign him to a max contract and trade him to whatever team they wanted to. It could also be more attractive since next year’s free agency class is going to be dramatically better and more of the loopholes of the ne CBA will be ferretted out.

    With that said, if some team wants to go crazy and overpay to get him (like NJ did with Williams), then I think you have to do it now so that it’s not a season long distraction. Stuff like Bledsoe, Kaman and whatever other scrubs they are offering isn’t going to get it done though.

  2. Brandon says

    Here are my odds:

    Warriors: 40% – Have several things going for them: (1) The player the Hornets want most, Stephen Curry; (2) The ability to add Tyson Chandler; (3) Enough left over pieces (David Lee, Monta Ellis, Dorell Wright) to form a contender; (4) New ownership looking to make a big splash; and (5) a big market.

    Celtics: 25% – Ahead of the rest of the remaining field because Ainge is willing to throw in the best player, Rondo, without any guarantees that Paul will resign. Look for Ainge to swing a three team deal to appease the Hornets who are reportedly not huge fans of Rondo.

    Clippers: 15% – Lower than you might expect. The expectation here is the notoriously stingy Donald Sterling doesn’t actually want to make a trade for Chris Paul and would only do so if it made financial sense. Trading cheap youngsters for Paul not only presents its risk that Paul will not resign, but perhaps even worse for the Clippers, if he does resign, it raises the expectations for Sterling to open his wallet to further build a contender around Paul. This is not something Sterling is going to want to do.

    Lakers: 15% – Just because they’re the Lakers and we’ve seen this play out before. Bynum would give the Hornets a legitimate building block.

    Rockets: 10% – They have enough interesting pieces to make a three way deal work and are not as risk averse as other teams. They are willing to gamble that Paul will stay without any further assurances.

    • ignarus says

      Good point on the Clippers — that’d be TWO major stars putting pressure on Sterling to spend what it takes to win.

      To keep CP (whose departure would likely herald Blake Griffin’s), they’d need to be legit contenders, not just young underpaid guys with potential.

      No way that happens as long as the head coach is Vinny Del Negro…

      • ignarus says

        For a GM, having Donald Sterling as the owner of your team is the exact opposite of Pat Riley putting his rings on the table.

  3. Michael says

    “and signing Chandler to a four-year deal that would likely start in the neighborhood of $15 million annually.”

    Huh, what? Tyson Chandler is going to make $15 million next year? That’s more than Lebron James made last year lol.

    I think Chandler is great and all, but that’s basically a max contract and you got to be kidding yourself if you think he is worth that.

    • ignarus says

      someone might pay it, but it’s hard to see how, with his injury history and age, that he’s worth it even in the short term.

      that’s a lot of cap space to eat, but it’s also a craaaaaaaappy free agent market.

    • p00ka says

      “That’s more than Lebron James made last year lol.”
      21 players made more than lebron last year, and 14 will make more this year. What’s your point? That some players are overpaid? Yes, you’re right.

      “you got to be kidding yourself if you think he is worth that.”
      It doesn’t say he thinks he’s worth that. I could be mistaken, but I have a feeling that he thinks that with multiple bidders fighting over a proven 7+ footer, history will repeat itself and he’ll wind up being overpaid in that neighborhood.

      • Michael says

        @pooky- Considering Lebron James was in the first year of a near-max deal which would be the equivalent of Tyson’s reported potential salary by David Aldridge, the two are comparable you nimwit.

        And no, I promise you Tyson Chandler will not make $15 million next year. It’s a moronic statement by Aldridge and a moronic line of thinking. If Al Horford and Joakim Noah are getting paid about $60 million over 5 years, no way you can convince me any team will sign Chandler for that much over 4 years. And those were deals made last year before the new CBA was implemented.

          • Matthew says

            I still find a 4-year contract at $50M hard to fathom. Yes, teams tend to overpay for tall stiffs, however, but it’s not like Chandler is a) durable; and b) would have been worth half that much prior to last season. I suppose if Adonal Foyel could get a $40M contract, anything is possible though. What I do know is that if someone signs Chandler for $50M, they are going to be regretting it shortly afterwards.

          • p00ka says

            Hey, I don’t argue what you say Mathew. I agree with you. I don’t think he’s near worth it, but my point was that Amick from wasn’t saying that either. History says that Chandler’s big contract year is going to get him a very big contract as a FA within a landscape of multiple teams feeling dire need for a 7’1″ center who defended well enough last year to help the Mavs win a chip. FA for guys like that are just like an auction; multiple bidders results in overpaying, every time.

          • Michael says

            Apparently p00ky has the reading comprehension problem because nowhere in David Aldridge’s article (not San Amick you moron which is what I referencing from the start) did he ever back up that statement with any sources. It’s entirely speculation on the part of David Aldridge himself. Not that you would know the different between pure speculation and providing evidence to support your claim.

            Yeah, Chandler will get a big contract. But 4 years $60 million? Give me a fucking break. Only someone as stupid as you could believe that

          • Matthew says

            Actually, after reading Bill Simmons’ pieces, Chandler could very well get 4 years and close to $70M. Michael, it’s not an issue of whether or not he’s worth it. Teams overpay for centers period. Now throw in the fact that teams need to spend at least 85% of the salary cap and you’re going to see some really bad contracts out there. Chandler is one of the better free agents (although I think he’ll be a bust) out there. So for a team like the Washington Wizards, who have to spend $34M in this free agent class, are you going to give big bucks to Chandler or Dalembert?

          • Michael says

            Um… Matthew as a Wizards fan and I can promise you we don’t have to and will not spend $34 million on this free agent class. We already have about $41 million spent on salaries for 2011-2012 not including draft picks and whatever we pay for Nick Young. Unless we are planning to amnesty someone, that number doesn’t make sense to me. And btw, I don’t see us going after either player.

            Anyways, the 85% number isn’t really relevant. With the harsher luxury tax, NBA free agent spending by teams as a whole will in all likelihood drop or stay stagnant in the short term. The whole point of the new CBA was to decrease spending on player salaries after all. So that’s why in a general sense I don’t find that to be a big deal.

            But my initial point remains, in last year’s huge free agency spending bonanza, Horford and Noah could only acquire $60 million over 5 years. To assume Chandler is going to get that in 4 years seems ridiculous because there is zero evidence to suggest there is a market out there for that kind of salary.

          • p00ka says

            Still with serious reading problems: check
            Still with anger management issues where calling people names gives him a “win”: check
            What a waste of human flesh.
            “The fundamental cause of trouble in the world is that the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt.” – Bertrand Russell

  4. Buddahfan says

    Tweet of the day nominee

    “We communicate with all of our players. Dwight happens to be one of them.” – Otis Smith
    55 seconds ago

  5. john says

    Chris are you hearing anything? You had the early scoop on Carmelo last year that he wouldn’t sign with anyone but the Knicks. Has CP3 taken as strong a stance?


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