NBA Execs believe LeBron’s influence can get lead to a Chris Paul trade to the Lakers , with the OKC star already being cryptic about his future.
We have new Champions in the NBA. This means, we also have an upcoming free agency and trade season, one that could shape the next few years in the NBA.
Free agency is a different thing altogether, but it usually is the trade that changes the shape of the future.
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With the Lakers enjoying their championship right now, that doesn’t mean they’re resting. While they currently have to deal with their own members hitting free agency, like Anthony Davis, Rajon Rondo, they would also look at possible trades to solidify their roster further.
While some may argue that the Lakers are strong as they are right now, one needs to remember these Lakers did not face Steph Curry and the Warriors in their full strength, or Kevin Durant and his Nets. Other teams such as the Nuggets, Clippers, Bucks all are planning to solidify their roster further, and so should the Lakers.
Chris Paul to the Lakers?
Chris Paul has been delivering cryptic answers about his offseason plans. It is no secret that CP3 has wanted to play in SoCal for so long. The plan for Chris Paul to join the Lakers and Kobe Bryant back in 2011 did not pan out. If CP3 can join the Lakers and LeBron, it would be a dream come true for both of them.
NBA Execs believe that if CP3 makes his way to the Lakers, LeBron’s influence would be a major factor in it. LeBron James and Chris Paul go a long way back and with Rondo hitting free agency, the Lakers would be desperate for an A-League point-guard to join them in LA.
According to a league executive on the possibility of the Lakers pursuing a Chris Paul trade;
“Chris Paul would love to come back to L.A. I know it would be a dream come true for Chris…I know LeBron loves and trusts him, and he would be a good fit.”
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) October 15, 2020
A sampling of what the executives are thinking:
“Chris Paul would love to come back to L.A. I know it would be a dream come true for Chris,” an Eastern Conference executive said. “I know LeBron loves and trusts him and he would be a good fit.”
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“It seems like a risk, but sometimes you need to [execute big moves] to make yourself even better,” the executive continued. “The [Golden State] Warriors will be better. The [Los Angeles] Clippers may be better. The [Denver] Nuggets aren’t going to get worse. Your competition is getting better. It worked [in Orlando] for the Lakers, but I don’t know if you have a normal regular season without the bubble if it does.”
“It’s a no-brainer to get a third scorer [and playmaker] like Chris. It’s a really valid and viable scenario,” he said. “Will it happen? I don’t know, but if I’m the Lakers [or] if I’m LeBron, that’s what I go for. They might be able to get a pick back from the Thunder, like [the Miami Heat’s 2021 previously acquired by Oklahoma City].”
The biggest hurdle in the CP3 trade to Lakers
The biggest trouble that the Lakers would face in this otherwise ideal plan is the salary cap. Chris Paul has a 2year, $85.6 mil contract still remaining and if the Lakers want him, they would have to give up a lot. A LOT.
The Lakers would have to clear a lot of salary space, which is easier said than done. You do not want to jeopardize your franchise’s future over a possible Big 3, 2 of whom would be 35 and 36 next season.