By Chris Haynes, CSNNW.com Trail Blazer Insider (@ChrisBHaynes)
Chris Paulto the Los Angeles Lakers was that close to being a done deal, that is, until the other owners got word of it and reached out to David Stern urging him to kill the deal.
At their request, Stern obliged late last night leaving Paul, the Lakers, the Hornets, and Paul's dad in disarray.
"Chris is frustrated," Charles Paul, the father of Chris Paul toldCSNNW.com. "He's going to leave after the season anyway and it's not right that these owners are trying to dictate where Chris lands."
The league took over ownership of the struggling New Orleans Hornets last year and have been running the franchise ever since. People wondered how the relationship would work out when it was time for the league to trade a key player. We found out.
In a 3-team deal, the Lakers were to receive Paul, Houston Rockets to land Pau Gasol, and the Hornets were attaining Lamar Odom, Kevin Martin, Goran Dragic, Luis Scola, and a 2012 first-round pick.
"That was a great deal for the Hornets," Charles Paul said. "This was something the owners should have discussed during the CBA negotiations. They shouldn't have thought Chris was going to re-sign with New Orleans. He wants to go somewhere he can win. That's it."
Mr. Paul might have a point there. If the Hornets know that Paul isn't returning when he hits free-agency, the right move is to get something for him now while you still can. And looking at that deal, that was indeed a good exchange.
Unless the rest of the owners can figure out a way to get the Hornets a better deal elsewhere, if not, this is ridiculous. I get the fact that the owners stance is competitive balance, but the Hornetsleague was doing what was best for the Hornets. It just so happens that it helped out the Lakers immensely.
Now that the transaction appears to be terminated for the time being, all players involved must report to their respective clubs for the start of training camp. Can you say awkward?
"The Hornets got about five or six guys on their roster. This whole thing is a joke," Charles Paul said. "I told Chris to just be patient. Things happen for reason and he'll eventually end up in a good situation."