There’s a deal on the table that would send guard Chris Paul to the Los Angeles Clippers and send guard Eric Gordon, forward Al-Farouq Aminu, center Chris Kaman and Minnesota’s first round pick in 2012 to the New Orleans Hornets. If this gets done without the Clippers having to include guard Eric Bledsoe, it’s a joke.
The Clippers are giving up a nice young and up and coming star in Eric Gordon, but the impact to the Clippers and the big men that the Hornets were to receive do not compare. The Hornets would have received forwards Lamar Odom and Luis Scola, guards Kevin Martin and Goran Dragic and a first round pick from the Houston Rockets. Plus Pau Gasol would have landed in Houston.
Not only would the Lakers have taken a talent hit, the big men would have been more talented and proven for the Hornets. This was simply done to stop the Lakers from getting Chris Paul. This is the first time David Stern has buckled to pressure from the owners so publicly. If he truly believes the deal did not make basketball sense, there is no way he can approve this deal, especially if Eric Bledsoe is not included.
Dan Gilbert cried his way in stopping the Lakers from getting Paul but in the end may have put them in a better position to land center Dwight Howard. Del Demps, the general manager of the Hornets, did a magnificent job loading his team with talent by trading a player that would have walked at the end of the season and the NBA vetoed the trade.
So if this deal, which is a worse deal, goes through, it highlights two things: First, the NBA should not own a team and should fold this franchise if they can’t get it sold and second, the original trade had nothing to do with keeping Paul in New Orleans but everything to do with making sure he was not a Laker.
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