CP3 Is A Clipper: A Breakdown Of The Big Deal
He was traded to the Lakers. Then that was vetoed. Then the trade was off that was going to send him to the Clippers. Well, I guess the Clippers decided that what the Hornets wanted in return was enough to obtain Chris Paul’s services. The Clippers shipped C Chris Kaman, F Al-Farouq Aminu, G Eric Gordon and an unprotected 1st round pick the Clippers received from the Timberwolves to the New Orleans Hornets for Paul and two future second round draft picks. All Clipper fans are rejoicing. They feel their savior is here. But really is this move going to make the Clippers a team to beat?
Let’s examine what the Clippers look like now. In case no one was paying attention, the Clippers now have four PGs on their roster: Chauncey Billups, Eric Bledsoe, Chris Paul and Mo Williams. Plenty are probably wondering how all of them will fit on a roster and the perfect answer is they all won’t. I think the Clippers will likely waive Williams via the amnesty clause. With the other three PGs, I think they will rotate all three at PG and Billups could see a lot of time at the SG position. I know there are naysayers that say that will not work, but its worked before, even going back to the days of Walt Frazier and Pearl Washington.
An issue that could come from this trade will be depth. The starting five could be Chauncey Billups, Caron Butler, Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and Deandre Jordan. But after that, who do the Clippers have? Eric Bledsoe and possibly Ryan Gomes would be it. I think the Clippers should go out and try to acquire or sign a piece or two up front. With what the cap situation is going to look like, I expect that the signings that the Clippers make after this trade will be players that basically make the veteran minimum. A veteran combo guard and big man to come off the bench would be nice additions.
Now no trade is one-sided, so we have to look at the trade from the New Orleans perspective. In bringing Eric Gordon, who was the crown jewel for this trade for them, they now have a guy who could be the explosive scorer and personality that they need. Expect him to get as many opportunities as possible to fill it up as he will be the main weapon. Kaman will be a solid big man inside for the Hornets. He will provide some scoring punch inside as well as rebounding to match Emeka Okafor. The biggest wild card in this trade for me is Al-Farouq Aminu. Is he a SF or a PF is still a question a lot of people have. He can handle the basketball, but he cannot shoot consistently. He really isn’t physical enough at the PF spot to produce there. It should be interesting to see how he develops with increased playing time.
In the overall view of this trade, I believe the Hornets got the best deal that was on the table. They got a scorer, a rebounder, a first round pick and a guy that could potentially be a very good player. But for the Clippers, they got one of the best PGs in the game, if not the best. He and Blake should connect plenty of times for alley-oops that are sure to be on Sports Center. The Clippers had to make this move to make themselves relevant in L.A. for the first time since they went to the playoffs with Sam Cassell and crew. Only time will tell if their attempt at becoming a consistent competitor backfires because of the loss of young talent but we will see. But for now, Los Angeles is buzzing and it isn’t buzzing because of the Lakers.