Chris Paul Messes Everything Up

Jason Lake

Friday, June 30, 2017 6:39 PM UTC

Friday, Jun. 30, 2017 6:39 PM UTC

Rumor had it that Chris Paul was looking at the San Antonio Spurs. But Paul chose the Houston Rockets instead, and the Rockets are shooting up the NBA odds list.

Consternation and uproar! The Los Angeles Clippers were about to lose their best player, point guard Chris Paul. He decided to forgo his player option; the San Antonio Spurs were rumored as a likely free-agent destination, so we took the bait here at the ranch and recommended the Spurs at +1200 on next year’s championship futures market.

You know what happened next: The Clippers worked a sign-and-trade with the Houston Rockets, ensuring they wouldn’t lose Paul for nothing. At least L.A. finally has a strong bench after picking up Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams, Sam Dekker, Montrezl Harrell and others in exchange for Paul. But they’ve still fallen from +3300 to +6600 on the NBA odds list at Bovada. The Rockets, on the other hand, have exploded from +2500 all the way to +1200, and the Spurs have slipped to +1400 now that Paul’s off the market. Oy gevalt.

Start the Insanity

There’s no question the Rockets are in a stronger position to win the title now, but Paul’s chances at grabbing that elusive ring would have been even better in San Antonio. His skill set overlaps to some degree with that of James Harden, who enjoyed the best season of his impressive career after taking over at point guard last year. There’s no reason to think these two gentlemen can’t share the ball, and a lower usage rate should benefit both players. It’s still not quite as good a fit as Kawhi Leonard and the Spurs would have been.

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.@etrade #DidYouKnow: Chris Paul & Paul George are the only players to make 3 All-NBA & 3 All-Defensive teams in the last 5 seasons.

— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) June 30, 2017

With free agency officially tipping off July 1, there’s more wheeling and dealing on the horizon, so let’s not overthink this – Paul George could end up in Houston, too, and if that rumor has any substance, the Rockets belong in our NBA picks at +1200. But everything’s up in the air right now. George might go to the Boston Celtics (+1400) instead, along with Gordon Hayward. Blake Griffin might leave the Clippers for the Phoenix Suns (+50000), who are also in the market for Paul Millsap. And Lord knows what’s happening with the New York Knicks. At least they won’t have Phil Jackson to kick around anymore. Stay Zen, my friends, and may the sphere be with you.

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