Could the Pacers Land Chris Paul?

A side note: I don't believe Chris Paul will be traded THIS summer.

When word came that Chris Paul would be interested in being traded if the Hornets weren't interested in building a championship team, I immediately thought the Pacers could be players in a possible Chris Paul trade.  Although far-fetched, it enables the Hornets to cut salary as well as get 3 young players in return to help rebuild their franchise.  In order for the Pacers to acquire Paul, a third team would need to be involved who would need to be under the cap and could take a little extra salary.


In the following trade, all players involved (with the exception of Paul) would be entering the final year of their contracts for the 2010-2011 season.  The three teams involved are the Pacers, Hornets, and Grizzlies.

Indy gets: Chris Paul & Sam Young ($14.3 million total)

New Orleans gets: Tyler Hansbrough, Brandon Rush, & Hasheem Thabeet ($8.3 million total)

Memphis gets: T.J. Ford, Josh McRoberts, & a future 1st round pick from Indiana ($9.3 million total - prior to the draft pick)

The reasons why Indy does the deal are obvious.  Let us just dream of a lineup that includes Chris Paul, Danny Granger, Roy Hibbert, a healthy Mike Dunleavy, and this year's draft pick(s)!

This is a financial deal for the Hornets.  They lose one of the best point guards in the NBA and their franchise player.  But, they gain 3 players who've combined to play 4 years of professional basketball.  I don't have the contracts of Okafor or Stojakovic involved, so the deal may stop there if New Orleans insists either player be involved.

Memphis does the deal because they need a point guard and have said they would like to improve that position this off season.  Conley is proving he isn't quite capable of handling the PG duties, and Ford - if given free reign - could be the answer they're looking for.  They also get a young talent in McRoberts who proved last season to be an extremely efficient rotational guy.  They also get a future 1st round pick (2011 top 5, 2012 top 10, 2013 unprotected) at their disposal.

As mentioned above, I don't think New Orleans makes a move for Chris Paul this season.  They'll most likely make an attempt to show Paul they're committed to building a championship team.  Should the Hornets have another miserable season next year, he certainly could be on the move at the trade deadline or after next season.  This would be a better time for the Pacers to go after Paul.  They'll have expiring contracts and young veterans with another year of experience to prove they're capable NBA players.

I truly see the Pacers being big players for Chris Paul.  If not this summer, then next.  Until then, we can continue to dream of an abbreviated duo of CP3 and DG33.  Now, make it happen, LB33!

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