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Update: Chris Paul trade moving fast, Dwight Howard not

Dec 7, 2011, 9:37 AM EDT

Miami Heat v New Orleans Hornets Getty Images

This much has become clear: It is very likely Chris Paul will be traded before the start of the NBA season and talks are fast tracked on that move. However, talks surrounding a Dwight Howard trade have slowed to a trickle as Howard has not told the Magic what he wants so that team remains focused on moves to keep him in house.

Chris Paul cannot be traded before Friday, Dec. 9, but Hornets GM Dell Demps is moving fast, listening to offers from around the NBA. After a meeting with Paul on Monday where it was clear CP3 would not sign an extension in New Orleans, Demps has refused to let this situation drag out as happened with Carmelo Anthony last year. This process has gained a real momentum.

Golden State may be the team in the lead right now. The Hornets offer is based around Stephen Curry and rookie Klay Thompson. But in addition they are one of the leaders in signing Tyson Chandler, reports Marc Stein of ESPN, a race the Warriors jumped into prior to the CP3 trade talk. Paul and Chandler played together in New Orleans and Paul has told teams it is far more likely that he signs an extension somewhere if Chandler is on that squad.

The Clippers and Celtics remain in the mix and have made first offers, reports Ken Berger at

The Clippers’ opening salvo was an offer that included restricted free agent DeAndre Jordan and Minnesota’s unprotected first-round pick, with L.A. hoping that the prospect of playing with electrifying forward Blake Griffin and the big stage of Los Angeles would be enticing enough to Paul that he would eventually commit to the team long term. Eric Gordon is not in the deal “at this time,” a source said, though it is understood that any deal that would include a commitment from Paul would have to include the sharpshooting guard….

But the Celtics stepped forward with an offer that would not have to come with any commitment from Paul that he’d re-sign with Boston after the season. According to a person familiar with the discussions, the Celtics offered Rajon Rondo, two future first-round picks, and restricted free agent Jeff Green in a sign-and-trade for Paul.

The Hornets would be fools to do a deal with the Clippers that did not net them Gordon, and Demps is no fool. The Clippers, obviously, would like to keep Gordon as the two guard next to Paul, which is why he is not in the deal currently. Also, reportedly the Clippers may have offered Chris Kaman instead of Jordan, but you can bet the Hornets prefer the younger and more athletic Jordan.

The Clippers and the Warriors face similar issues with Curry and Gordon, reports Marc Stein at ESPN.

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.

Paul may have said he wanted to go to the Knicks, but that is only happening if he becomes a free agent and signs there this summer. As Berger notes, the best they can offer is Chauncey Billups (a $14 million expiring deal), Landry Fields, Iman Shumpert and Jerome Jordan. Not good enough. The Knicks are reportedly trying to get better trade assets. They should talk to Denver, where the Knicks sent all their assets last year to get Carmelo Anthony.

The other team in Los Angeles — the Lakers — are not out of the running either, reports David Aldridge at The Lakers package is reportedly Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom for Paul and the unpleasant contract of Emeka Okafor.

A team willing to take on Okafor and his three-year, $40 million deal may have an advantage in the talks.

If the Lakers send Bynum for Paul they would likely be out of the Dwight Howard sweepstakes… if there will be one.

Howard and the Magic front office have spoken but unlike Paul he did not say he will not sign an extension to stay. Which means right now the Magic are more focused on bringing in a superstar to pair with Howard and keep him rather than sending him out.

They are targeting Deron Williams among others, according to David Baumann at Big House Sports Network (via Eye on Basketball). Also on the radar are Chris Paul and Monta Ellis, according to the reports. For the record, there is no way the Nets are trading Williams, they are trying to acquire assets to keep him there.

The problem for the Magic remains this — how do they get these players? While on his way out the door Magic CEO Bob Vander Weide said landing another star “… is certainly possible, teams like our assets.” What assets? There is nothing on the Magic roster a rebuilding team like the Hornets would want. Brandon Bass and J.J. Redick don’t cut it. And it’s hard to make a move with the Gilbert Arenas and Hedo Turkoglu contracts sitting there.

But for now the Magic are intent on trying to keep Howard, and so that train has slowed way down.

Chris Paul, on the other hand, is very likely to be traded sooner rather than later.

  1. anhdazman - Dec 7, 2011 at 10:51 AM

    A very rare moment in time where the Warriors are actually the front runners in a quest to sign a big time Player.

    • zammael - Dec 7, 2011 at 12:15 PM

      The Rick Barry curse?

  2. leearmon - Dec 7, 2011 at 10:59 AM

    Full disclosure, yes I am a HUGE Knick fan. Now that thats out of the way, Im really curious as to how a Clippers deal for Paul – not including Eric Gordon is better than the NYK? Looking at the facts, DeAndre Jordan is a good piece, no question about it, but he will probably be overpaid somewhere around the $38-42 million range. Yes he is an athletic center with huge upside, but he’s only had one strong season, and that came alongside Blake Griffin. Add to that, you would still have Okafor and his contract on your roster and Jordan becomes less attractive as they do the same thing. Then you have Eric Bledsoe and Aminu?!?! Please, Bleadsoe Aminu and Landry were all rookies last season. Two were drafted in the first round, yet only one was a first team rookie selection. Ill let you guess which one that was. Then you have Chanucey. Yes he’s getting up there in age, but he’s still productive, much more so than Bledsoe, hell would you say Bledsoe is better than DWTDD? the stats don’t suggest it:

    Back to Billups, as you pointed he has a $14 million expiring contract, which would seemingly benefit a team in financial peril like the NOH. So how is a Bledsoe, Jordan, Aminu Minn 1st rd pick better than a Billups, Fields, Shumpert & Shumpert? I dont see it. Obviously, the Warriors, and Lakers’ deals are much better than anything all other teams are offering, but the continued dismissal of the Knicks’ talent (or lack thereof) is a bit misguided.

    • snoopy2014 - Dec 7, 2011 at 12:38 PM

      I completely agree with your first point. The extent to which the media (and perhaps the Clippers) is overvaluing DeAndre Jordan, Aminu, and Bledsoe is ridiculous. Dell Demps is smart, there’s no way he should take a deal without Eric Gordon (although if Paul doesn’t commit to an extension, his hands might be tied).

      To your 2nd point – I’m not really sure the Knicks package is better. Actually, there’s no doubt the Knicks package is worse to a rebuilding team. Rebuilding is the key word. No one cares if Billups is still halfway productive, he’s far too old. He’ll just keep them from getting a higher draft pick. Acquiring Billups is anti-rebuilding.

      Also, that MN draft pick is far superior to any pick the Knicks have. In a supposedly very strong draft, that’s extremely important to a rebuilding team.

      From an outsider’s (non-Knicks-fan) perspective, the media’s fairly right on this one. The Knicks have very little to offer to a rebuilding team. It’s the pu-pu platter of offers for the best PG we’ve seen in a while. And I don’t have a lot of sympathy for the organization. They were fools to chase after a middling efficiency player like Melo that hard, and it’ll probably cost them Paul.

      • drobstad - Dec 7, 2011 at 12:49 PM

        How is a top 3 scorer in the league a “middling efficiency player”? All the talk about Melo playing no defense is a sham. The guy may take a play or two off here and there but he also is up near the top of the league in steals every year and is a decent re-bounder as well. The guy averages close to 30 a game and has never been on a good team his entire NBA career. Best team mate he has ever had is Chauncy Billups.
        Landry Fields was an all rookie first team last year and Toney Douglas is absolutely better than Bledsoe (the stats clearly show this – look at the player comparison above.) Shumpert was our first round pick this year and I don’t think people realize how talented and impressive that kid really is. Along with Billups who you could then deal if you don’t want him to “ruin your draft selection (meaning u don’t want win games?) because he has a large expiring contract. These are good rebuilding pieces and are much more valuable than anything the Clippers have to offer BESIDES the Minny pick which is a big piece.

      • thatboi901 - Dec 7, 2011 at 2:59 PM

        Knicks fans must not know basketball. It is a lot harder to find a talented big man than to find a talented wing player. DeAndre Jordan has more trade value than any player on the Knicks outisde of Amare and Anthony. Fields is good but not spectacular. So I am taking a high potential big over him. I rather the Minny pick than billups and/or Shumpert. Minny pick gives you a good chance at a franchise player. Shumpert was one of the most ineffecient players and worst jump shooters last year at the college level. Nothing to wow about there. Billups does them no good. He would be an overpaid guard playing on a non playoff team.

      • leearmon - Dec 7, 2011 at 5:02 PM

        I would respectfully disagree. For a rebuilding team, especially one with financial issues such as the Hornets, they do not need to burry themselves deeper into a hole. So while we agree DeAndre Jordan will help them fall deeper into financial trouble, the Knicks will be essentially offering a $14 million “get out of jail free card” in Billups.

        snoopy, this is what you’re failing to understand. Yes Billups is old, however the Hornets would receive instant cap relief, after a shortened season. So his $14 million is actually very helpful to a rebuilding team. The T-wolves pick is the best part of the trade for the Hornets, yet I havent ready anywhere if it is protected. Depending on exactly where it falls is the big difference between a great pick to a decent pick, and with the history the Hornets have of drafting that is a huge deal.

        Finally snoopy you seem to have a good grip on advanced stats, so there actually is no doubt that a Fields, Douglass and Shumpert combo is much better than a Jordan, Bledsoe Aminu selection. The stats more than back that up, combined with the fact that Fields makes far less than Aminu and Bledsoe and if NOH wanted to they could still renounce the rights of DWTDD at the end of the season to get further below the cap, and I ask, again, how any sane person could argue a Clippers trade (without Gordon) is better than a Knicks offer? There are no facts to support this belief, if you feel there are please state them, but remember facts are not your opinions. Again, the Knicks more than anything are offering cap relief, but the stats show they also are offering the better young players than the Clips.

        901boi, it seems you must not know basketball, whether you agree that Jordan is the second coming or not, you’re forgetting they are already tied up in a huge contract to someone who does the exact same thing. Jordan will probably command $40 million or so, that means you will have Okafor number two. You will have a significant amount of money (for a team who needs financial stability) tied up into two player who do the EXACT SAME THING! Where is the logic in that?

        As for Shumpert, his offensive numbers are very worrisome, so on a team like the Hornets he may not be ideal, but his defensive numbers should not be overlooked. He was widely regarded as the best, or second best perimeter defender in college last season. So there is a chance he could easily be a Battier-Bowen type of player. And again considering his draft slot, and the money that would be committed to him, its hard to say he’s not as good, if not better an option than that of Aminu, who was inefficient personified last season.

    • idontevenwannaknow - Dec 7, 2011 at 12:45 PM

      C’mon man, unless the knicks some how manage to get pieces from another team to complete a deal with NOLA, they still want young players to build around, that’s why the knicks are dismissed continuously.

  3. leearmon - Dec 7, 2011 at 11:23 AM

    * Shumpert and Douglas

  4. drobstad - Dec 7, 2011 at 11:54 AM

    I could not agree more with Leearmon. There is no way any package coming from the clippers that doesn’t include Griffin or Gordon can match a Knick offer. There is a natural national hatred for NY, especially after the Melo-drama. If you haven’t been to Madison Square Garden than you are incapable of understanding why these stars want to play here. The money on their contracts does not matter as much when you play in NYC. You’re worldwide endorsement deals will make up more than half of the max salary per year anyway. I know for a fact that Nike grants a substantial bump in endorsement revenue to players if they can make it to NY (Chris Paul is a Nike client is he not?).
    If the Lakers want Paul and are willing to give up Bynum and Odom, I assume they can have Paul… But if you were CP3 would you want to sign long term to play with Kobe (best player in the world hands down) at this point in his career?
    The optimal situation for Paul is to make his way to NYC and be with his best friends in the league. Golden state, Clippers & Celtics have -3,000,000% chance of landing Paul and all the people reporting that any of these teams has a chance of landing Paul are all wasting their time.

    • snoopy2014 - Dec 7, 2011 at 2:27 PM

      Learn the difference between scoring points and efficiency, and then come back and talk to me.

  5. athleticproject - Dec 7, 2011 at 11:56 AM

    Just wrote a post about the situation on

    I see Paul in NY by next year through FA and Howard in NJ or GSW.

  6. asox - Dec 7, 2011 at 12:23 PM

    “But the Celtics stepped forward with an offer that would not have to come with any commitment from Paul that he’d re-sign with Boston after the season. According to a person familiar with the discussions, the Celtics offered Rajon Rondo, two future first-round picks, and restricted free agent Jeff Green in a sign-and-trade for Paul”

    But a sign-and-trade to Boston would essentially be a committment from Paul. He is not going to sign an extension with New Orleans prior to knowing where he will be traded.

    • Kurt Helin - Dec 7, 2011 at 1:35 PM

      The extension in a sign and trade I believe is limited in length, like a couple years. Thing is, even if it was a full deal under the new CBA it would be four years, $74 million, where if he just becomes a free agent wherever he is traded he can re-sign with that team for five years, $100 million. But the risk is he walks.

  7. drobstad - Dec 7, 2011 at 2:06 PM

    CP3 in a nutshell:
    1) A team (warriors, Celtics or Clippers) trades away their future to rent Paul for a season and he signs with the Knicks in 2012
    2) Every team finally gives into the fact that only CP3 controls where is he playing in 2012, refuses to give up the future of their franchise for a 1 year rental, and the Hornets make the wise move and accept Douglas, Shumpert/Fields, Jerome Jordan, Billups and maybe a pick…
    3) The Hornets get nothing at all.

    Chris Paul controls his destiny in 2012. His rights can be owned for 1 year. If any one wants to rent him for one year and give away their franchise in the deal than so be it… He will be a Knick by the start of next year either way you slice it.

    • boriqua717 - Dec 7, 2011 at 2:38 PM

      How about D he goes to Lakers

  8. bozosforall - Dec 7, 2011 at 2:51 PM

    Sounds like the best bet to keep CP3 long term is to also sign his buddy Tyson Chandler as well. If a team like the Lakers was willing to pick up Chandler first, they could then use not only Bynum and Odom as trading chips but also Gasol as well.

  9. EvanZ - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:24 PM

    Looking at Orlando’s roster, it’s a miracle they even made the playoffs. Ryan Anderson is probably the only other tradeable asset on that team.

  10. ras1tafari - Dec 7, 2011 at 4:29 PM

    When does the FA / trading period start for god’s sake?

    This rumor/preparation time is all just heavy petting and dry-humping. Let’s get to the f–king already!

    • 00maltliquor - Dec 8, 2011 at 3:37 AM

      That’s probably the funniest post I have read here! And true!

  11. progress2011 - Dec 7, 2011 at 8:56 PM

    Sleeper….The Heat have 6 free agents ( Chalmers, Bibby, James Jones, Dampier, Howard, Magloire ) !
    For a team looking to rebuild and clear their salary….the Heat can send ALL these dudes to N.O.

    Picture this:

    PG – Paul
    SG- Wade
    SF – Bron-Bron
    PF – Bosh
    C- it won’t matter, pick anybody

    Smell the Championship ……ahahahahahaha !!!!

    I know that thought has made some of ya’ll wet yourselves. But the possibilities are REAL.

  12. bozosforall - Dec 8, 2011 at 12:56 PM

    Dwight Howard and Jameer Nelson to the Lakers for Bynum, Odom and two first round picks. Maybe even throw in someone like Shannon Brown for good measure.

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