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Report: Chris Paul’s agent tells Hornets he will not sign, wants to be Knick

Dec 1, 2011, 2:41 PM EDT

Miami Heat v New Orleans Hornets Getty Images

This might be David Stern’s worst nightmare. The only thing that would make it worse is if union lawyer Jeffrey Kessler were Chris Paul‘s agent.

Paul has informed the Hornets front office that he will not sign an extension with the team and that he wants to be traded to the Knicks, reports Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo.

Chris Paul’s agent informed New Orleans officials on Wednesday that his client will not sign a contract extension and wants to be traded to the New York Knicks, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

As soon as the NBA lifts its lockout restrictions, Hornets general manager Dell Demps wants to meet with Paul and hear that directive from him.

Paul does like New Orleans the city, but this is a team without an owner in a small market that is a long way from being able to compete for anything. Thank you again, George Shinn.

David Stern is stuck because the league currently owns the Hornets after Shinn was unable to sell the team to a local businessman and was hinting at bankruptcy.

After five months (really two years) of Stern preaching about the need for competitive balance in the NBA, making that a cornerstone of the five-month lockout, he cannot have the league trade CP3 to the big market Knicks. The 28 other owners would lynch him.

What’s more, the Knicks don’t have any tradable assets that interest the Hornets anyway, they shipped them all to Denver to get Carmelo Anthony last year. The Hornets want picks and young players with potential. Demps has been talking to other teams, but the only way Paul is going to the Knicks in a trade is if one or more other teams get involved as facilitators. Those kind of deals are hard to put together.

If Paul is going to end up in Madison Square Garden, it likely will be as a free agent next summer. Then the Knicks could offer a four year contract that starts at $13 million to Paul, although that is less than the $17.4 million where an extension with the Hornets would start.

Or, he might broaden his trade horizons as other teams try to sell him. Which might happen, as this note from Wojnarowski hints.

Paul has reached out to Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard recently, encouraging Howard to find a way for the two to play together, sources told Yahoo! Sports. That would be a difficult scenario for the Knicks to make happen. Paul’s desire to join the Knicks was cemented after he spent so much time in New York over the summer with close friend, Carmelo Anthony.

  1. readysethike - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:02 PM

    I guess his heart isnt in NO anymore like he said the other day

  2. tomtravis76 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:15 PM

    These guys should really be looking at being apart of the Brooklyn franchise. Its going to be the “it” franchise.

    • florida727 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:44 PM

      You forgot two letters… it’s going to be the SH– franchise. No quotation marks necessary really.

    • bearsandjazz - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:48 PM

      Yes tomtravis 76 because it makes a whole lot of sense to have 2 Starting point guards on 1 team (Deron Williams, ever heard of him)……How you never became a Basketball GM I will never know!!!

      • goforthanddie - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:35 PM

        Yeah, because Williams is on his last year too. If they did get Paul, they don’t have to sweat Williams.

      • georgeanderson2 - Dec 1, 2011 at 10:58 PM

        Knowing the contract status of other players not on your team is part of a GM’s job. Did you see that Williams declined a contract extension?I guess we will never know why you are not a GM.

        The Brooklyn franchise has a chance to become a popular team.

    • bceltics1010 - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:21 PM

      This sounds just like what everyone was saying last year with the Heat..and we all saw how that ended..

      • deadeyedesign23 - Dec 1, 2011 at 7:49 PM

        With a trip to the finals?

  3. stadix093 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:21 PM

    He wants to play for the Knicks? Well as a Lakers fan can I just say I will be fully satisfied with a D Will paired with D Howard rumor that will be coming any second now.

    • bearsandjazz - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:56 PM

      Just like a Lakers fan to beg hope for AllStars because without a team of them the Lakers/Kobe cant win a title. The Jazz made the best move they have ever made….Get rid of the guy who can hold your eam hostage. Lakers are a Miami Heat Boston Celtic Wanna be….Kobe Cant Do it without being srrounded by the hot player or players.

      • bozosforall - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:59 PM

        The Lakers have won 10 titles since the modern era (Magic/Bird/Jordan) began. If anyone is a ‘wannabe’ it’s the rest of the league trying to be like the Lakers.

      • loungefly74 - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:27 PM

        dude? really? 3 trips to the finals in the past 4 years…quiet down kid. ya dont know what youre talking about. go back to enjoying those Jazz titles…oh wait.

  4. hellinisamoron - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:24 PM

    Hey Hellin. Now you can tell us again that competitive balance is mythical. Of course it is when players can dictate the teams they go to.

    • BrownsTown - Dec 2, 2011 at 12:06 PM

      It’s New Orleans’ fault. All they had to do was follow the San Antonio model and draft two hands-down best players #1 overall. They have nobody to blame but themselves.

  5. giselleisasucubus - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:27 PM

    why would he want to be a Knick? This is dumb. I really can’t stand these guys trying to build dream teams, then saying it was inspired by Boston. Boston had to give up talent and make trades, and then convince KG to stay. Boston has 17 titles, and contrary to some opinion, is a great city for athletes. If you have a chance to go there,(and once again Boston will give up a ton to get him), why would you want to go to NY? Carmelo & Amare? Newsflash- Guys dont just start playing defense. KG didnt wake up in 07 & say,”hey, I am going to devote myself to D.” No. He was always elite. Carmelo is lazy. That isnt going to change. If Paul comes to Boston, he has a chance to win in his first year and become the next great Celtic, which is like being a great Yankee. Cap space is aplenty after this season, and if Paul is here, convincing Dwight Howard isnt so crazy. There is also a good chance Ray & KG stick around for low $$$(write that down- at least ray). Seeing a 2012/13 lineup of Paul, Allen, Pierce, Garnett and Howard is not as insane as one would think. Danny set them up. Chris Paul needs to keep an open mind because he has a chance to become a true great and win w/ the most historic franchise instead of building the NBA version of AAU team up in NY. You need defense. Use your brain, Chris.

    • cantonbound13 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:38 PM

      Sounds like a bitter Celtics fan that realizes his team is too old to compete for a title.
      Unfortunately, LeBron, Wade & Bosh created this idea of creating a “Super team”. The Knicks are just doing what is necessary to compete. I’m sure Chicago, L.A., and Brooklyn will put together their versions soon. The Miami 3 ruined the league & unless you try to adjust your team will not be competitive.
      By the way Garnett & Allen for Jefferson, Gomes & Jeff Green does not sound like a fair trade to me. Maybe the fact that McHale made the deal with his buddy Ainge had something to do with that trade going down.

      • bozosforall - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:57 PM

        And now it’s being talked about that the Pacers (Larry Bird) may help facilitate a three-way trade between NO, Boston and Indiana. Yeah, if that happens, the fix will definitely be in.

        You nailed the “bitter Celtics fan” part right though. The Boston idiot fails to acknowledge that most of those “17 titles” were won in the Stone Ages of the NBA (when there were an average of 8 teams total in the league and Red Auerbach was allowed to run rampant all over the other franchises in terms of personnel issues). As usual, Celtics fans are a joke.

      • giselleisasucubus - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:23 PM

        Canton, I have been a Celtics and NBA fan for 30 years. I have watched them win 4, lose 3, and they have won 17 titles.Why the hell would I be bitter? These last 4 years have been great, and I am just pointing out the obvious. Are you a Knicks fan? I feel for you if you are… Listen, you can say what you want about the trade and it was a buddy agreement, but to say Al Jefferson, Jeff Green(#5 pick) and the other pieces they gave away were nothing is just wrong. Yes, Miami screwed things up, but the only team that has a shot in the east to beat them is Boston. Chicago is good, but they arent good enough. If Paul was added to the Celtics, they beat the Heat. I see no sense of bitterness. I am just pointing out the obvious.

    • bozosforall - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:02 PM

      “2012/13 lineup of Paul, Allen, Pierce, Garnett and Howard is not as insane as one would think”

      More like delusional. Par for the course for Boston fans though.

      • giselleisasucubus - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:49 PM

        hahaha, yeah, delusional Boston fans with our 7 titles in 4 sports since 01, not to mention a Super Bowl loss, NBA finals loss & 2 ALCS losses. Yeah, Boston never loads up and wins titles. We must be crazy to live in this dreamworld.

      • beagle11 - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:07 PM

        also the highest level of racist white trash for a large city and by far the ugliest girls..BOOM

  6. cantonbound13 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:30 PM

    Hopefully there won’t be a classless decision show. I doubt anyone is as arrogant as LeBron.

  7. sonofsambowie - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    I want a million dollars to tour the world playing pop-a-shot, but that hardly means someone is going to give it to me.

    This right here is the Knicks chickens coming home to roost. This is also for everyone who defended their decision to give every single asset they had away in the Melo trade. This right here is why it was a dumb move. Now, arguably the best PG in the NBA (even if he’s got that troublesome knee) wants to play for your team, only you have diddlysquat to offer New Orleans in return. Trust me when I tell you that Landry Fields and Toney Douglas ain’t gonna cut it.

    Now, if you offered something like Gallinari, Fields, Mozgov and a few first round picks…

  8. sippindasyzurp - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:40 PM

    This is why I am losing more and more interest in the NBA… NHL, NFL, NCAA football and basketball is where it’s at folks!

    • somekat - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:22 PM

      NCAA football is a joke, and at best a popularity contest. It is not a sport

      I agree with the rest though

      • ilovefoolsball - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:34 PM

        no the BCS is a joke, the game is great.

  9. florida727 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:47 PM

    Stern and the owners can’t have it both ways. They want the players to be nothing more than “employees”, which really is all they are. Well, guess what? Employees are free to go to work for whoever they want. If I want to go to work for IBM with a friend of mine, and I’m qualified to do that, I can leave my current employer any time I feel like it and start with IBM… as long as they want me. This is no different.

    • teke184 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:50 PM

      If IBM has an employee who signs a contract to stay with them for 3 years, then there will be language spelling out penalties for leaving.

      Some people in my office used to work for major companies in private industry and were legally barred from doing certain kinds of work until 2-3 years passed because of non-competes written into the contract at their old job.

      • florida727 - Dec 2, 2011 at 8:12 AM

        “teke184”, non-competes in business are only good for the timeframe in which “consideration” is received in exchange for not going to a competitor. I have a friend who received a year’s worth of salary but his severance calls for TWO years of non-compete. Every labor lawyer I’ve spoken with, and I have a vested interest in my friend because I want to hire him, says the non-compete is invalid after one year. No consideration = no non-compete.

    • predicatepanda - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:24 PM

      Don’t disagree with you in principle. The players, however, have to be willing to accept the consequences – declining contracts. Fewer relevant teams means less national interest. This leads to less attendance, lower apparel sales, and smaller TV contracts. Endorsement deals may come down if advertisers feel the player’s appeal isn’t as broad. Stern knows this is potentially a big problem for the league. If it continues, then major contraction seems inevitable.

    • giselleisasucubus - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:55 PM

      If Apple(Celtics)wanted to hire me, I am quite sure that I would accept that offer over Gateway/Acer(Knicks). That is what I am confused about. The Knicks suck.

      • dannyblaze62 - Dec 1, 2011 at 10:30 PM

        How bout those geriatric Celtics Ms. Giselle or should I say u-suc-a-bus?

      • giselleisasucubus - Dec 2, 2011 at 2:28 PM

        really danny? thats all you got. U-suc-a-bus? That is terrible. Do you know what a sucubus even is? DO you realize I am ragging on one of the guys I root for because his wife sucked his lifeforce out? Get a clue.

    • somekat - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:25 PM

      Couldn’t be more wrong. If you signed a CONTRACT to work for you current employer, you would not be free to leave and work for IBM (assuming IBM is competition). You would not be able to work for them for the duration of the contract, wether you were with the employer or not. I’m sure you could get our ofyour paperboy contract, but if you had any marketable skill, your employer would be well within their rights to keep you from going to work for a competitor.

      So yes, this is different. You’d probably be better off not speaking about things you have no clue about (ie. contract disputes)

      • florida727 - Dec 2, 2011 at 8:20 AM

        “somekat” is right. As pointed out, a CONTRACT legally binds BOTH parties to some sort of “performance”, in this case working a job. A non-compete clause only applies AFTER the expiration of the work-performed portion of the Agreement (contract) and even then, only when “consideration” (read: money) is given in exchange for one’s not applying their skills for a competitor, thereby harming the past employer, for a specified timeframe.

      • leearmon - Dec 2, 2011 at 8:46 AM

        This is what seems to be the 5 billionth time someone has tried to say “If you signed a contract to work for employer X, you would not be able to leave and work for employer Z because they are competition.” What you all are failing to understand is that The Hornets, Knicks, Nets, Lakers whatever team you want to use, are all part of the same company. They are no more direct competition than a different region of IBM (I’ll use the IBM example since this is the one you all are fixated on) So if you work for the New Orleans branch of IBM, but you have a desire to transfer to the New York branch, especially when your contract is honored you will be able to do so. The Hornets are no more of a member of the NBA than the Knicks are. They are competitors by nature of the product, but if you are a salesman, you are still competing with your fellow co-workers to sell the most products, but you’re doing it for the greater good of your business. The NBA is the business that that the Knicks and Hornets belong to. So this notion of non-competes is just ridiculous.

      • giselleisasucubus - Dec 2, 2011 at 2:24 PM

        somekat, personally, I am referring to the fact that his deal expires this year. If he doesnt resign, he is free to go where he wants. So again, let me reword this for you- if I am working for Ma&Pa’s PC shop(Hornets) and they know I am leaving after my contract is up in a year, clearly the leverage is in one corner. Ma&Pa(Hornets) cant afford to just let an asset walk, so they essentially sell him to a big market(Boston, New York). Now, EMC(Celtics) doesnt want to give up their assets if they get only a one year return because the player wants to go work for Acer(Knicks). THAT is what we were talking about. Stop acting like this is some dream world where people play or work out the entire lengths of their contracts. Unfortunately, those days are long gone, in sports and in business.

  10. teke184 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:48 PM

    If he’s not willing to sign an extension anywhere else, I’d say the Hornets’ two choices are:

    1. Sit on him for a year and make him live up to his contract

    2. Trade him somewhere that is willing to risk him not resigning, either to get a title this year or because they think they can change his mind.

    New York isn’t getting him because they have absolutely nothing to trade.

    • leearmon - Dec 1, 2011 at 6:13 PM

      New York isn’t getting him? If I were a betting man I’d love to take that bet. He’s already said he won’t sign a contract extension in Boston, and that he wants to play in NYC. The Knicks don’t have to trade for him, they can sign him as a free agent next summer, when Billups’ contract is up, and they can renounce the rights to DWTDD. As for the Knicks have nothing to trade theory, I could have sworn I heard the same thing last year around this time, when overwhelming belief was that Galinari, Chandler and Mozgov were a bunch of bums and that New Jersey would easily get Carmelo because they had better assets. Point of the matter is Billups expiring is a huge asset. A first round pick is as well, then throw in a 1st team all rookie selection from last year and its hard to see the Hornets when backs are against the wall turning that down.

      Lastly, Kurt I remember last year you went on and on about how bad the Carmelo trade was, especially because they could have gotten Deron Williams. Well a year later I must ask you, how bad was that trade now, especially considering if they would have traded for Deron they wouldn’t be after CP3.

      • Kurt Helin - Dec 2, 2011 at 12:17 AM

        I’m not sure we can judge that trade after half a season.

    • dannyblaze62 - Dec 1, 2011 at 10:32 PM

      They don’t have to trade…just wait. He’ll sign after this short season. They should show the patience and look out if D12 follows him. The eastern conference should pencil the Knicks into the finals for years to come.

  11. karlton2 - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:52 PM

    Of course, if Chris Paul and Dwight Howard sign somewhere together, how long will it take ‘Melo to decide that he doesn’t want to be a Knick anymore?

    • dannyblaze62 - Dec 1, 2011 at 10:34 PM

      Melo is not going anywhere because Paul will be a Knick.


  12. bearsandjazz - Dec 1, 2011 at 3:52 PM

    Stern will make a good business decison for The Hornets, he wont be trading him to the knicks for a globe and a road map or Oregon. This guy missed that “I CAN FORCE MY WAY OUT” bus by 1 year. Good luck Chris, I hope they force you to live up to your contract and then we’ll see how much you want to go to NY when they offer 4 million less.

  13. ogre2010 - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:18 PM

    The new NBA, IT’S FAN TASTIC

  14. sonofsambowie - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:26 PM

    Poor guy is living in fantasyland:

  15. giselleisasucubus - Dec 1, 2011 at 4:52 PM

    well, I got a rise at least. Thought that might happen :)

  16. jolink653 - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:03 PM

    Still don’t understand why the owners didn’t push for a franchise tag so something like this wouldn’t happen…I’m a Knicks fan and I didn’t want to see something like this happen again because it ruins every other small market NBA team…obviously I would like to have Chris Paul (even though I would prefer Dwight Howard so much more) but i don’t want to see the hornets get lebron’d and a franchise tag similar to the one in the NFL would stop players from doing this in the future or at least make sure the other team gets compensated fairly

    • goforthanddie - Dec 1, 2011 at 11:43 PM

      They should have done more to make staying put more attractive. But if a guy plays out his contract and wants out of Dodge, I can understand him not wanting to be tied down. The NBA isn’t a desk job, you have a limited shelf life. You should have every ability to play wherever you want, AFTER fulfilling any contracts you’re under.

  17. beagle11 - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:08 PM

    Starting to really look like it wasn’t about the MONEY for the players but the FREEDOM

    • somekat - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:31 PM

      Yeah, that is why they demanded that the sign and trade rules stay in place. Because it was about freedom, not money (insert maximum sarcasm while reading)

    • goforthanddie - Dec 1, 2011 at 11:44 PM

      The freedom to make money where they choose.

  18. darealrandolph - Dec 1, 2011 at 5:41 PM

    cp3 to kkkkkkkknnnnnnnniiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiicccccccccccccccckkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkssssssssssssssss
    New York Knicks nation all day every day
    let go knicks

  19. darealrandolph - Dec 1, 2011 at 6:16 PM

    knicks : cp3,melo,amare
    nets: d12,d-will and (nene or tyson chandler)
    Knicks soon to be champs baby……………….

    • jimeejohnson - Dec 1, 2011 at 8:18 PM

      You spelled “chumps:” wrong!

      • dannyblaze62 - Dec 1, 2011 at 10:40 PM

        Yeah, you spelled your name right “chump”.


  20. mrlitl - Dec 1, 2011 at 7:23 PM

    I really despise this new dream team era.

  21. reupjosh - Dec 1, 2011 at 10:50 PM

    Why are some of you people saying the players have the right to choose their employer (team)? It’s the NBA that employs these players! The fact that they should “be allowed to hold a team hostage” to play who they want to is ridiculous. that’s like a receptionist going to work, saying they aren’t going to do anything until they are named the CEO. Players holding these teams “hostage” is bad for the league, and the game. I’m a Knicks fan, but hate the way melo screwed Denver and made us trade our roster. A roster that could have been used for CP3. Melo would have signed with ny anyways. Yes, I know Dolan jumped the gun on that trade.

  22. 8man - Dec 1, 2011 at 11:41 PM

    I thought this lockout would solve the whole “punk decides where he wants to be” situation.

    The boy plays in the Crescent City or he sits…or plays nowhere….

    This is part of the reason I can’t watch this league anymore. Ballers picking cities they like, creating situations they like and management allowing it. Hello, Miami.

    Still hate the players and could have been good with losing the entire season to get these punks in line. That is how you crush a professional sports union. Take away their paychecks! On the bright side, he didn’t say LA.

  23. ghelton03 - Dec 2, 2011 at 12:00 AM

    NY will need to sign free agents that are desirable to NO and close a deal at the trade deadline. Otherwise, Paul will just play out his contract, sign with NY next year as a free agent and NO will wind up with nothing.

    • sonofsambowie - Dec 2, 2011 at 12:03 AM

      With what money?

  24. rreducla1 - Dec 2, 2011 at 2:02 AM

    One thing I disagree with in terms of what Kurt is saying: I think it is possible that this is not Stern’s “worst nightmare.” Rather, this CBA is just the prelude to trying for a hard cap in 2017. The owners got a big chunk of BRI, and if Paul goes to NY, and Howard goes to LAC, LAL, or Brooklyn, that will add to the knee-jerk haterboy stuff that we see on the net every day, and there is a lot of it on this site–which will set up Phase 2, orchestrated by Adam Silver.

    Also, Zach Lowe at SI explained how Paul can try to work it to get to NY with a max deal.

  25. denverdude7 - Dec 2, 2011 at 4:42 AM

    It SO refreshing to have the NBA back isn’t it?

    Let the prima donna parade begin.

    SIGH…I miss the lockout already.

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