He just won’t be playing for the Los Angeles Lakers.
ESPN.com is reporting that the Hornets and Los Angeles Clippers submitted paperwork to the NBA on Sunday for a blockbuster trade that would put the All-Star point guard in a Clippers uniform this season. This comes after a 72-hour cycle in which commissioner David Stern killed a three-way deal that would have sent Paul to the Lakers, and later a re-worked deal that would have also dealt Paul to the Lakers fell apart over the weekend.
Even this deal by the NBA-owned Hornets could soon come unglued.
According to the report, the Hornets want promising young point guard Eric Bledsoe as part of the deal but the Clippers aren’t willing to give him up. The Los Angeles Times wrote Sunday that Bledsoe is in the deal, but sources are refuting that claim.
The Clippers are smart for once because the chances of Paul doing a long-term deal with them are slim to none. Paul wants the glitz of playing for a franchise like either the Lakers or the New York Knicks.
The Clippers are in the right market but it’s definitely the wrong franchise where Paul is concerned. Paul can opt out of his current contract after this season and become a free agent next summer, which he will definitely do if the Hornets hold on to him. The Clippers are apparently just hoping Paul will agree to the optional year on his contract and remain with them until the end of next season.
It’s a gamble for which the Clippers are willing to send center Chris Kanman, guard Eric Gordon, forward Al-Farouq Aminue and a first-round draft pick to New Orleans.
That would seem to satisfy the NBA’s desire to receive some young talent to replace Paul. This way the franchise doesn’t lose value while the league shops the Hornets to a new owner.
In other NBA moves, the Dallas Mavericks completed a three-way trade with the New York Knicks and Washington Wizards that saw Tyson Chandler join the Knicks and Ronny Turiaf become a member of the Washington Wizards. Guard Gilbert Arenas was waived by Orlando on Friday and has since cleared waivers.
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