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Whatever Chris Paul asks for today, don't bet on the Hornets trading him soon

Jul 26, 2010, 9:02 AM EDT

Thumbnail image for cpaul_sits.jpgWe know what new General Manager Dell Demps and new coach Monty Williams are going to say to Chris Paul today when the two sides sit down for their first face-to-face meeting:

Give us a chance.

Both have just been hired in recent weeks, both will say they have not had time yet to build and coach up a team around Paul yet. They will ask for that time.

What Paul responds remains the question mark — as does the situation with Hornets ownership. Whatever the best intentions and plans of the new GM and coach, without the ownership situation settled things remain in limbo with the franchise. And Paul is not a fan of limbo. (The place, he may well be very fond of the dance, we don’t know.)

Whatever the case, don’t look for Paul to be moved anywhere anytime soon. Look at what other teams are being told, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.

“They say they aren’t moving him,” one rival team executive said of the Hornets.

Sources with knowledge of New Orleans’ thinking said over the weekend that the Hornets’ stance is unlikely to change, at least in the short term, even if Paul himself tells the Hornets for the first time that he wants out.

If you think the Paul’s preferred destination of the Magic are close, listen to what Stan Van Gundy told FanHouse:

“Much ado about nothing,” Magic coach Stan Van Gundy Saturday told the Orlando Sentinel when asked about reports linking his team to Paul.

“We are only involved in this story because someone said he wants to be traded and someone said he wants to come to Orlando,” Van Gundy told FanHouse Sunday. “It’s a New Orleans and Chris Paul story.”

Paul has two years left on his deal. Even if he does want out, the Hornets have enough leverage to wait on a deal they really like.

And any deal they like will probably include someone taking back the contract of Emeka Okafor — four more years and $52 million. Okafor is not a disaster of a player — he gave the Hornets a solid 10 points and nine boards a game last season, with reasonable efficiency — but he is vastly overpaid. Rebuilding without Paul would mean the Hornets would want to get rid of the Okafor contract, which would be an anchor on any rebuilding efforts (sort of like the Elton Brand contract is on Philadelphia).

So finally the Hornets and Paul will sit down face-to-face today and has it out. But don’t expect any resolution soon.

  1. Matt Dillon - Jul 26, 2010 at 10:26 AM

    This is silly yo think that Cp3 can’t get his way. Although Hornets hold the wild card, if they have the opportunity to let go of a disgruntled player while being able to get rid of Okefor’s contract they will do it. With new management in town, they can begin their reconstructive efforts now, while appeasing both sides.

  2. Yeah, right - Jul 26, 2010 at 10:35 AM

    LeBron’s son isn’t going anywhere. Why would the Hornets give up a guy just to get a bag of magic beans in return?

  3. J - Jul 26, 2010 at 11:11 AM

    I really hate these multi million dollar players who sign these big lenghty contracts, get millions of dollars and then don’t want to live up to their end of the bargain. I really wish some owner/GM would stand up to all of these poeple in all sports who either demand to be traded or demand a new contract that pays them more and say to them “You signed a contract, the contract is binding, either live up to your end of the bargain or stay home, don’t get paid and rot away on your couch” then take them to court and sue them for breach of contract when they do sit home instead of living up to their deal.

  4. mitch - Jul 26, 2010 at 11:33 AM

    I agree with this in theory, if you sign a contract, you should do ur best to honor it, here’s the sticking point, everyone knows these guys will just phone it in if they arent happy. Thats completely wrong and a &^%!! lack of class but they do it. As an owner, you have to say, is he going to bring the entire team down or will he actually live up to his contract by trying his best. As an Orlando Magic long time fan I saw this with T-Mac, he admitted later that there were nights he just basically showed up and coasted.

  5. panthur - Jul 26, 2010 at 11:50 AM

    @J if you did that you would never get any players to play for your team these owners make money of of their players they know who hold the cards…

  6. Taylor - Jul 26, 2010 at 11:58 AM

    J & Yeah, right -
    I don’t like any player demanding a trade either, BUT, the Hornets management can’t just take a hard stance and refuse to move him because eventually the power will shift and be all in Chris Paul’s hands. And the only thing worse than trading their star player now, would be making him fee like you “wasted” 2 years of his career, and then be able to do nothing but watch him walk away (and not get any in return), a la Toronto with Bosh.

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