The Phoenix Suns suffered a disappointing and embarrassing exit from the playoffs for the second year in a row, and sweeping changes could be coming to the roster this off-season.
Chris Paul Next Team Odds: Could He Team Up With LeBron?
The Suns entered the postseason as one of the favorites in the Western Conference. They were one of the hottest teams down the stretch of the regular season after acquiring Kevin Durant, and his presence was supposed to push them over the hump. But Phoenix lost to the Denver Nuggets on Thursday, the second straight season in which they’ve lost an elimination game by 25+ points.
The Phoenix Suns are expected to ‘aggressively’ shop Chris Paul this summer, per @espn_macmahon
It’s ‘pretty likely’ that Chris Paul will be playing for a different team next season 😳
(h/t B/R) pic.twitter.com/nEgtpBooEy
— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) May 12, 2023
Durant’s presence on the roster seems to be safe, but there are reports that the Suns will do their best to shop both Deandre Ayton and Chris Paul this summer.
The oddsmakers at BetOnline.ag have released the odds for where Paul could end up next.
Favorites To Trade For Chris Paul:
Los Angeles Lakers (+300)
The Lakers are the most obvious landing spot for Paul, no matter how their current postseason run turns out. He and LeBron James have been friends forever and have flirted with the idea of playing with each other for years. With both in the twilight of their careers and with Paul’s future in doubt, there seems like no better time than now.
It would make sense for the team overall, too. D’Angelo Russell has a contract that expires this summer, as does Dennis Schröder. The team will undoubtedly be looking to add an established point guard to get the most out of James’ final seasons. Paul will carry roughly a $30 million cap hit, which is actually less than what Russell was paid this year.
Minnesota Timberwolves (+400)
It is interesting that the Timberwolves are listed this high. In basketball terms, having Chris Paul around would make sense. The starting lineup is wildly talented, and a veteran point guard of Paul’s caliber could be the missing piece.
But Paul’s price tag would likely cripple Minnesota’s cap space. They already owe a combined $77 million to Rudy Gobert and Karl-Anthony Towns for the 2023-24 season, and they’ll have to pay Anthony Edwards sooner rather than later. They could substitute out Mike Conley’s $24 million for Paul’s $30 million, but filling out the roster would likely be difficult.
Miami Heat (+800)
The Miami Heat are the team with the 5th best odds of trading for Paul, but they should be higher. The Heat are always on the hunt for their next star or player to keep them competitive, and perhaps more so now than ever. Jimmy Butler is in his playoff prime, but will be 34 years old at the start of next season. If Miami wants to capitalize on his postseason dominance, they’ll have to do it soon.
Adding Chris Paul would help. The team would have to do some serious cap space maneuvering as they have high-priced contracts up and down their roster, but they were in a similar situation before acquiring Butler a few years ago. Never count out Pat Riley and his front office.
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