The saga of Chris Paul and the New Orleans Hornets has now entered day five. After nixing the trade of Chris Paul to the Lakers because of “basketball reasons” late last week, the Hornets have been given permission by the league to explore other deals involving their franchise player. Once again, any deal involving CP3 must satisfy David Stern and the league overall since they hold all the power here. Never mind the fact that the Hornets GM Dell Demps is busting his tail trying to get the best possible deal only to be vetoed by someone who has no clue how to run an NBA franchise. The latest deal involving Chris Paul has him going to Los Angeles once again. Only this time he won’t be going to play with Kobe Bryant and the Lakers.
The latest deal centers around Paul going to the Clippers to play with Blake Griffin. The fact that Stern vetoed a perfectly good trade late last week is ridiculous, the fact that Paul can now be traded somewhere else is a travesty, and the fact that numerous teams have been hurt and affected by the power trip that David Stern went on is awful.
Steve Kerr joined KNBR in San Francisco with Razor and Mr. T to talk about all the layers to the NBA nixing the Chris Paul trade to the Lakers, what he makes of Dan Gilbert’s e-mail that he sent about being upset about the deal, on the idea that Dan Gilbert had an issue with the idea that the Lakers could also try to get Dwight Howard, and how he thinks this will end.
On the layers of the NBA deciding to veto the trade of Chris Paul to the Lakers:
“Every one of them is wrong and I don’t know how many there are either but I’ve been angry all day long about this whole thing because I think it was a great basketball trade. There are so many trades made these days that are lousy trades that are made for financial purposes. I mean I made one of the worst trades in NBA history. I traded Kurt Thomas and two first round picks to Seattle for nothing, to save 16 million dollars for our organization. Where was the NBA then to veto that trade for basketball reasons? That had nothing to do with basketball reasons. I understand what they’re saying is they own the Hornets and ultimately they have the right to veto any move. Okay so from a legal standpoint I guess they’re okay, but the problem I have is that this was a great trade for the Hornets. There’s no way they can duplicate that. I thought Dell Demps did an incredible job. You end up with three legitimate good players in (Luis) Scola, Kevin Martin, and (Lamar) Odom. You get a first round pick, you get Goran Dragic who I like and a guy I drafted in Phoenix. He’s a good player. You’re telling me you’re going to deny that for basketball reasons when every single other analyst out there and every GM thinks they hit a home run with that trade. And by the way in seven months if they play it out they are getting nothing.”
What he makes of Dan Gilbert’s e-mail:
“And by the way that whole argument is false because those numbers are under the assumption that the Lakers would not re-sign Paul or use the nine million dollar trade exception that they got in the deal or use their mid-level exception. Of course they’re going to re-sign Paul to a max deal so he throws out those numbers but that’s assuming the Lakers didn’t do anything. Of course they were gonna do something. They were going to spend every dollar they had available. The Lakers make more than any team in the league so he would have gotten all that tax money that he wanted or whatever. It’s such a crock that he would even mention that. That guy is a billionaire, they have been way over the cap while they had LeBron, way over the tax. He’s still upset that he lost LeBron and he needs to get over it. LeBron gave that franchise the best seven years they have ever had. He was a free agent and he decided to leave. Nobody likes the way LeBron left, even he apologized for it the other night on TV but the fact is there is a thing called free agency and if a superstar player wants to leave when they are agents, they can leave. That’s their right.”
On the idea that the Lakers would have assets left over to try and get Dwight Howard:
“Good for them. They accumulated all those assets. Chris Paul wanted to go to New York but New York didn’t have anything left because they traded for Carmelo and he couldn’t get to New York. So guess who wins? The team who has all the assets. That’s why you accumulate assets. It still comes down to drafting well and making smart decisions. Then the factor that can’t be controlled is there are certain markets that are just more attractive to free agents. I mean get over it. Most people would rather go to LA than Cleveland. If you don’t like that then go buy LA.”
How he thinks this will end:
“I don’t think there will be any lawsuits. I think the league has incredible legal advice and help and I gotta think they researched this beforehand. I do think because they own the Hornets I guess they have total authority. So they can do whatever they want. What happens when New Orleans tries to trade him next? They’re not going to do any better than they just did. So if they try to make another trade does the league all of the sudden approve it? There seems to be no rhyme or reason here.”