Are the Lakers the best match for CP3?
The NBA offseason is always filled with huge NBA news and rumors but one of the biggest ones has dropped before the end of the NBA Finals. According to Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report, the Phoenix Suns are waiving star guard Chris Paul.
The writing was on the wall after he had suffered another playoff injury but it is a surprise they didn’t attempt to trade him. They will now eat the $30.6 million left on his tally unless a team picks him up off waivers.
Paul can still be an effective player but it’s hard to see a scenario where a team will pick him up off of waivers. He had three productive years in Phoenix that saw the team reach the playoffs in each of those seasons, including an NBA Finals berth in 2020–21.
What worked against Paul is that the Suns have a new owner in Mat Ishbia. He has already undergone wholesale changes and recently replaced head coach Monty Williams with Frank Vogel.
The plan appears to be to build around Kevin Durant and Devin Booker. Paul is 38 now and injury prone so it’s easy to understand why they’d want to go in a different direction. That doesn’t mean the 12-time All-Star can’t still rock on the court.
If you bet on basketball and have found the lines on who will take him next, the Los Angeles Lakers are the obvious choice to pick him up. He lives in Los Angeles and maintains a close relationship with LeBron James. The stars could finally be aligning for them to team up. That could depend on how much money he’s looking for. The Lakers can’t have big money tied up in two players who are 38. If Paul is willing to come on a discount, then it makes a lot of sense for him to come to Los Angeles.
LeBron right nowpic.twitter.com/p0mr3wg045
— Nicks0wn17 🎬🖋️🥸 (@NickS0wn17) June 7, 2023
Speaking of Los Angeles, Paul has always been tight with Clippers head coach Ty Lue. If the team doesn’t bring back Russell Westbrook, they’ll need a starting point guard. Paul could be exactly the type of player they need to get over the hump. He’s the leader the team has desperately been looking to find for years since he left.
There should be no shortage of teams interested in Paul. If the Miami Heat can’t beat the Denver Nuggets, perhaps they’d look at the guard. He’d be a good fit with Jimmy Butler but they’re already paying Kyle Lowry good money. At this stage in his career, Paul is going to want to play for a contender. He only has so many years left before he’s forced to retire. He can still be an impact player on a championship team but he can’t be one of the top two options.
Which team should go after CP3? 👀 pic.twitter.com/Xw0taLMHAO
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) June 7, 2023
The Lakers will be the top team to watch due to his LeBron ties but they may want to get someone younger. If he’s willing to come to the team on a minimum deal, then Los Angeles should be heavily interested. If that team stays healthy with Anthony Davis and LeBron, they could win a championship. Of course NBA rumors are flocking social media as I write.
There is also a possibility that he sticks around with the Suns, per Shams Charania of The Athletic. He would still get waived but could still get re-signed. That might not be the best option considering the recent early playoff exit.