Since the Houston Rockets moved Chris Paul to the Oklahoma City Thunder, trade rumors have continued to swirl around him. That will be the case during the upcoming season, as teams will look to make a play for his services. Before any of that unfolds, Paul has made his intentions clear to any possible interested team.
Chris Paul’s impressive 2019-20 season
Before the 2019-20 season, there were questions about how much Chris Paul had left in the tank.
Paul quickly silenced the doubters behind an impressive bounce-back campaign that earned him his 10th All-Star Game selection and fourth All-NBA Second Team nod. The star point guard was the guiding force that pushed the Oklahoma City Thunder to the playoff despite the belief that the team was in a rebuilding year.
The 35-year-old demonstrated strong play behind his production and stepped in firmly as the team leader. His play helped push their first-round series against the Houston Rockets to seven games. It was a disappointing end to the season, but it was a year that re-established him as an elite talent.
It has also started up chatter around trade rumors, which he has laid out one guideline for whatever team is interested in him.
Chris Paul’s lone demand for any trade landing spot
Since the Houston Rockets elected to trade Chris Paul, the chatter has centered on his NBA future beyond the Thunder.
The firm belief has remained that he will get moved at some point in the upcoming season to another team. With that in mind, Marc Berman of the New York Post reported that an NBA executive told him that he believes Paul has the singular goal to play with a team that can compete for a title.
“He’s 35 — he wants to win,’’ one NBA executive said.
That is the only aspect lacking on Paul’s resume through his first 15 seasons. He has proven that he’s still playing at a high level and can be a considerable part of the puzzle for a team competing for an NBA championship. That has generated chatter that the Milwaukee Bucks could make a strong push to land him to help keep Giannis Antetokoumpo with the franchise for the long haul.
The Bucks have lacked another elite talent player around Antetokounmpo, and Paul could fit that bill. However, Milwaukee may not have the trade pieces that the Thunder will be willing to take on in any trade. The remark from the NBA executive also shows that he won’t entertain playing for a rebuilding franchise. That should immediately cross the New York Knicks off as the list despite being rumored as a suitor.
It also further underlines that Paul wants to compete for championships and nothing short of that at this point in his career.
More trade rumblings coming ahead
It’s still relatively early in the process as the offseason has yet to begin with the 2020 NBA Finals still underway.
More teams will emerge as possible landing spots as Chris Paul is playing at an elite level at this stage of his career. His remaining contract could make a trade difficult as he has two years left on his four-year, $159.7 million deal. He is scheduled to make $41.3 million next season and $44.2 million in the final year, which he already indicated he would pick up the option.
Paul’s situation should be one of the biggest storylines over the offseason that may see him get a new home in the NBA.