The possibility of point guard Chris Paul joining the Houston Rockets have increased over the last couple of days. Paul, as most people expected, will utilize the player option in his Los Angeles Clippers‘ contract to become a free agent. In doing so, Chris Paul has opened the door for a potential departure.
Nothing is imminent with Chris Paul and where would play. He has informed the Clippers that will skip the final year of his deal, according to the Los Angeles Times. Not only did Chris Paul exercise his opt-out clause, but so did power forward Blake Griffin.
Chris Paul has some significant financial incentives to remain with the Clippers. The Clippers want to try and to fine tune their team in hopes to be good enough to challenge the Golden State Warriors. Bringing back both Paul and Griffin is the top priority for the Clippers, followed by adding a wing player who can create some offense.
Lastly, if they can stay together, the Los Angeles Clippers’ players must stay healthy. However, staying together will be a huge challenge. The Clippers will have a lot of competition as they try to retain both Paul and Griffin. And the player the Clippers can least likely be without is Chris Paul.
According to Bleacher Report, the Houston Rockets are positioning themselves for a run at Chris Paul.
Again, there are some undeniable financial incentives for Paul to re-sign with the Clippers. Paul can sign a five-year deal for nearly $205 million, were he to stay with the Clippers. The Rockets and any other team for that matter can only offer Paul a deal worth $175 million over a four-year period. To convince Chris Paul to leave the Clippers, the Rockets would have to either come close to the maximum contract allowed.
Another strategy the Houston Rockets can use is to present the notion that they offer Paul the best chance at defeating the Warriors.
The Houston Rockets have James Harden already onboard. Harden is a top five caliber player, who is considered better than everyone the Los Angeles Clippers have on their roster.
— News 4 San Antonio (@News4SA) June 15, 2017
Clint Capela is an emerging talent in the post. He can run the floor and do all of the things that DeAndre Jordan can do. Capela is playing on a reasonable contract, which would allow the Rockets to add someone else with Chris Paul, provided he signs.
The other player the Houston Rockets have been tied to is Atlanta Hawks’ forward Paul Millsap. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Houston Rockets will make Paul Millsap an offer in free agency. If the Rockets can secure a contract with Millsap, they can use that in their attempt to lure Chris Paul to Houston.
The Rockets will have to be active in the NBA trade market if they want to sign Chris Paul and Paul Millsap. One of the players who is a candidate for a trade is point guard Patrick Beverly. During the night of the NBA draft, Yahoo Sports was reporting that the Houston Rockets were in talks with the Utah Jazz to ship Beverly out.
Patrick Beverly has the most reasonable contract on the Rockets, but he would no longer be a fit if the Rockets were able to sign Chris Paul. That the Rockets have not already dealt Beverly could be because they will have to compete with the Denver Nuggets and San Antonio Spurs for Chris Paul’s services. Missing from the list is the Los Angeles Clippers.
Because the Los Angeles Clippers can offer Paul the most money, they are a threat to keep him away from the Houston Rockets. But that does not eliminate the Rockets from being a front runner for Chris Paul.
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