Chris Paul rumors have been swirling non-stop since the end of the NBA lockout, and on Thursday, the buzz has gotten louder than ever. Paul's agent has requested that the New Orleans Hornets trade him to the New York Knicks, according to a report from Yahoo! Sports.
As Adrian Wojnarowski writes, Paul's agent told the Hornets this week that his client will not sign an extension in New Orleans this offseason, and would like to be traded to the New York Knicks.
Whether that amounts to "trade demand" or a polite request is up for debate, but the implication is clear: the Hornets have no choice but to try and trade Paul now, or risk losing him for nothing next summer. There are two potential problems, then.
- Problem #1: The Knicks don't have many assets that the Hornets want, making any potential Knicks trade significantly less attractive than some of the alternatives.
- Problem #2: Chris Paul still holds the leverage here. If CP3 is serious about preferring the Knicks, then he could refuse to sign a contract extension with any other team that trades for him. In other words, the more attractive trade offers the Hornets may receive (from the Clippers, Celtics, etc) are all contingent on Paul committing to their team over the long-term. And that may not happen.
In any case, after 12 months of suspecting that Paul would try to join up with his friends Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire in New York, Thursday's news seems to confirm our suspicions. Chris Paul wants to be a Knick. Whether it actually happens is now up to the Hornets.