Trade season is on! Shams Charania reporter the Phoenix Suns traded for Chris Paul. They are sending Ricky Rubio, Kelly Oubre, Ty Jerome, Jalen Lecque, and draft compensation. Suns‘ future first to the Thunder is protected 1-12 in 2022, 1-10 in 2023, 1-8 in 2024, and unprotected in 2025.
After being considered one of the worst assets in the NBA last year, a rejuvenated Chris Paul lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to 5th place in the West with an amazing 44-28 record. His value was always considered an issue due to his large contract and injury history - no-one doubted he can still perform at the highest level. Paul changed his diet and workout routine and is now enjoying the dividends.
This move brings Paul a lot closer to his family and their LA headquarters and puts him in the position to play for a young, talented team that needs veteran leadership.
Oklahoma City Thunder
This was the perfect time for OKC to trade Paul - a year ago, it was assumed they would have to add draft assets to offload his contract. Now they got a package of players they can use as assets or leaders for a young team and a draft pick.
With Rubio and Oubre, the team can still be competitive, help SGA, and other young players develop, potentially trade them before the trade deadline, acquire more assets, go into tank mode, and get a high draft pick for the loaded 2021 class.
For Phoenix, this is a perfect addition. As the bubble darling, going 8-0 and barely missing the draft, it was time to make a splash. Ryan Rusillo recently said that Booker wanting to leave Phoenix is the NBA's worst kept secret. The Point God is in town now, ready to provide playmaking and leadership.
With Ayton's progress and Booker rise to stardom, the Suns now have every reason to expect a Playoff appearance after a decade of being a lottery team. The last time Suns fans had a reason to care about the playoffs, Brooklyn's coach was their playmaker, and the Warriors coach was their GM.