Lakers favorite to land Chris Paul
After the Suns had a disappointing playoff exit, they are looking to make changes around Kevin Durant and Devin Booker. Chris Paul is one of the players they will look to move this offseason.
The Lakers open as the favorite to land Paul if he is not back in Phoenix next season.
Why is Chris Paul FAVORED to go the Lakers this off-season? 😂 pic.twitter.com/3oi6M8aVB4— Lakers All Day Everyday (@LADEig) May 12, 2023
It’s well-documented that LA landed Paul back in 2011, but David Stern, the commissioner at the time, vetoed the trade.
Paul is 38 years old and one of the oldest players in the league. The 12-time All-Star guard regressed this season.
He averaged 14/4/9 while shooting 44 percent and 37.5 percent from three. Paul is still an elite playmaker, but he is injury prone. Paul’s body has worn down in the playoffs, leading to him missing games. This was no different in the postseason this year, as Paul only played in the first two games of the six-game series against the Nuggets.
The Phoenix Suns are expected to ‘aggressively’ shop Chris Paul this summer, per @espn_macmahon— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) May 12, 2023
It’s ‘pretty likely’ that Chris Paul will be playing for a different team next season 😳
(h/t B/R) pic.twitter.com/nEgtpBooEy
Trading for Paul seems unlikely, even with his partially guaranteed contract. The only way Paul would realistically end up with the Lakers is if the Suns traded him and that team bought him out. Then Paul would have to be willing to take a veteran minimum contract from the Lakers.
If Paul took a minimum, it would allow them to re-sign their role players. However, adding another playmaker is not a need for the Lakers. LeBron James, D’Angelo Russell, and Austin Reaves are all players that can run the offense. They don’t need to bring in Paul, who would only take away from those guys.
"My contract is not up. Unfortunately, I'm not the GM or anything like that. So we'll see."— NBA District (@TheNBADistrict) May 12, 2023
— Chris Paul on his future as a Phoenix Suns player pic.twitter.com/IB0bkZBCqD
If they do end up with Paul, his best role would be the backup point guard, as he could initiate the offense for the bench group. However, Paul may prefer a starting role elsewhere if he’s not back with the Suns rather than a bench role on a minimum deal with the Lakers.
LA is heading to the Western Conference Finals to take on Denver. They should prioritize re-signing the cast that has gotten them this far around LeBron James and Anthony Davis. At Paul’s age and with his injury history, it would not be wise to trade for or sign him.
While the Lakers may be the betting favorite to land Paul, don’t expect to be a Laker anytime soon.