The free agent period in the NBA starts on July 1 and there are few teams that could offer both players maximum contracts.
The Atlanta Hawks are one of those teams and have significant salary cap room to sign both players. The Hawks were reportedly fined for tampering because of a letter sent to season ticket holders that named Paul and Howard as players the Hawks will target this offseason.
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"It would be very tough for him [Paul] to go to Atlanta," the source said. "He loved Atlanta when they should have drafted him in '05 but not so much since then. But hey, everybody is an option at this point."
The preference for both players would be to play together for the Clippers, according to the sources. Because the Clippers don't have enough cap room to sign Howard as a free agent, it would take a sign-and-trade deal with the Lakers to make it happen. The Clippers would be open to working out a deal, but they fear the Lakers would never trade Howard to them, according to the sources.