Star point guard Chris Paul has the Phoenix Suns only four wins shy of securing its first NBA title. The Suns’ impressive run through the playoffs has put an intense spotlight on Paul’s contract situation as he’s headed toward an expected free agency. With that in mind, another NBA team could become a serious threat to steal him from the Suns.
Chris Paul helps lead the Suns to the NBA Finals
Last offseason, Paul‘s arrival to the Suns quickly put the franchise on the map as a playoff contender in the stacked Western Conference.
The 36-year-old more than met those expectations as he helped transform Phoenix into a powerhouse, leading them to secure the Western Conference second overall playoff seed. The team followed that with an impressive push through the postseason, securing its first NBA Finals berth in 28 years.
With the Suns on the doorstep toward earning its first NBA championship, Paul may have another organization in the picture as a potential landing spot this upcoming summer.
Chris Paul may have 1 NBA team that could pry him away from the Suns
As the Suns move onto the NBA Finals, it puts Paul’s pending contract situation in the spotlight as he holds the opportunity to become a free agent this summer.
A recent report from Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report indicated the 36-year-old is planning on declining the $44.4 million player option for the 2021-22 season, making him a free agent. It presents the possible scenario of entertaining offers from other NBA teams.
According to Ian Begley of SNY, the Knicks could make a strong push to sign Paul due to the connection through his former agent, Leon Rose, being the team president.
“Several agents for point guards in the 2021 free agent class fear New York as a possible landing spot for Paul,’ Begely wrote.”Leon Rose was Paul’s agent before Rose became the Knicks president. But, again, New York would only be an option for Paul if he and Phoenix didn’t reach an agreement.”
It’s not to suggest the Knicks are serious contenders, but if the contract talks with the Suns fall through, the franchise will step firmly into the picture. Rose possesses a strong, established connection with Paul that could play a pivotal factor toward landing the star point guard.
New York may draw the 36-year-old’s interest after an impressive season resulting in reaching the playoffs for the first time in eight years. The team also possesses an intriguing core group led by rising star Julius Randle along with promising young players such as Immanuel Quickley and RJ Barrett.
However, Paul’s interest would likely occur after failed contract talks with the Suns. The Knicks’ path toward signing the future Hall of Famer is out of the franchise’s hands, but the team holds the opportunity to present it to him.
Phoenix holds all the cards toward retaining its star point guard
The Suns took the calculated risk to trade for Paul before this season in hopes of pushing the franchise toward the playoffs.
The star point guard’s arrival has done much more than that, as the team is only four wins away from its first-ever NBA title. The journey toward Paul’s first NBA Finals appearance may be more than enough to keep him satisfied to return to Phoenix on a multi-year deal.
He’s formed a strong bond and chemistry playing alongside Devin Booker as the two have become the foundation of the franchise’s success. The proof is already in the putting for the Suns as he knows what the franchise is capable of doing with him leading the largely youthful roster. Meanwhile, Phoenix will likely offer him a deal near what he’s looking to land financially.
Time will tell, but it’s hard to envision him wanting to sign a new contract with any other team aside from the Suns.
Contract courtesy of Spotrac.