Suns’ Chris Paul exit rumors intensify as potential team-up with Zion Williamson emerges
Just weeks ago, it seemed as though Chris Paul’s return to the Phoenix Suns was a foregone conclusion. But the deeper we’ve gotten into the NBA offseason, the murkier that reality has become.
With the NBA Finals hangover all but gone, the Suns brass is clearly second-guessing any decision to offer the 36-year-old All-Star the final mega-deal he so desires. The latest buzz surrounding Chris Paul involved a team on the hunt for their own veteran-laded playoff push – the New Orleans Pelicans. For Zion Williamson and his Pels, it’s definitely playoff or bust next season.
According to multiple sources with knowledge of the situation, the New Orleans Pelicans did have their sights set on prying Paul away from Phoenix. And there was a period this past week in which league personnel widely discussed the possibility of Paul playing elsewhere.
Suns governor Robert Sarver, after all, appeared Wednesday on Arizona Sports’ Burns & Gambo and said, “[Paul’s] got a decision to make and a business decision and a family decision and all that kind of stuff.”
The Pelicans even attempted to acquire Paul in a trade prior to last season, sources said. Head coach Willie Green was just hired away from the Suns, and Green is known to hold a close relationship with Paul. The All-Star actually lobbied Houston management to bring Green on board as an assistant during Paul’s tenure with the Rockets, sources told B/R.
By the looks of things, nothing sounds imminent on Chris Paul’s future as of yet. But it certainly doesn’t feel like the Suns are fighting off all suitors for their star point guard.
With the teams around the league loading up and getting healthy, the Suns may have let their best chance of winning the title slip away. That may be the motivation behind a potential reset with Chris Paul no longer on the roster.