What are some possible destinations for Chris Paul if he leaves the Phoenix Suns?
With the departure of Chris Paul from the Phoenix Suns looking all but assured, we take a peek at some likely landing spots.
The Phoenix Suns have a decision to make, and they have to make it in the next few weeks. Chris Paul is one of the greatest point guards of all time and word is that he actually wants to stay in Phoenix.
The problem? His $30 million salary becomes fully guaranteed if he is still with the club on June 28, and the rumor mill around the league is that they will choose to waive him rather than eat that kind of salary.
A trade isn’t very likely either, since a new club would have to swallow that debt, making it look like he will simply be waived.
Assuming that it plays out this way, there are several teams that could be nice landing spots for Paul. Here are the ones we think most likely.
Los Angeles Lakers
CP3 has well-documented close ties with LeBron James and that could play a big part in his decision of where to go. With LeBron nearing the end of his playing days, the Lakers might be looking forward for the next offensive organizer, and they could see Paul as a stop-gap option until someone younger comes along.
With the Lakers’ cap space available, they would be perhaps the best fit financially for Paul, and could easily absorb his relatively low price tag into their sqaud.
The Celtics are on the cusp of becoming a powerhouse franchise, perhaps even a lock for several seasons to come. There is no doubt that CP3 could lift them over the bar.
Coupling with Jayson Tatum, Paul could make the third-ranked offense in the NBA number one, and by a very wide margin, and it is difficult to see Boston passing on the opportunity.
The pitfalls in the deal would revolve around personalities, with Paul something of a ball-hog the rest of Boston’s stellar offense might have something to say about his team ethic.
But the real sting in the tail, the one that could derail the deal, the price tag. Unlike the Lakers, Boston would have to do some financial jiggery-pokery to make the numbers add up.
The Heat are in the middle of a potential championship run and will want to do everything they can to ensure that it is not a one-and-done for them. They will have a hard time squeezing under the tax threshold, but it may not matter, if they simply decide to pull out the stops and go for Paul regardless.
He could be seen as a cheaper version of Kyle Lowry and they could go that way, or perhaps see him as a replacement for Gabe Vincent.
With James Harden an old Houston team mate, Paul cold step in as a starter should Harden leave Philly. Even if he stays, Paul could take a smaller role and help push the Sixers over the threshold toward contention.
Whatever Harden decides, Paul’s connection to Daryl Morey would make him an obvious choice for Philadelphia to team with Tyrese Maxey.
This one may be a bitter pill to swallow for Paul, but it makes a lot of sense. Dallas is a contender with only Luka Doncic to lean on. Imagine if he had a shot creator to go to as well.
Kyrie Irving brought a little of it to the table but now Dallas is on the lookout for a complement, and Paul could be just what the Mavs need to push them into true contention.