The Chris Paul trade show continued anew on Monday night, when a source confirmed an ESPN.com report that the Hornets and Clippers re-engaged in discussions to send the four-time All-Star point guard to Los Angeles. It was the latest revelation in a wild day for the Clippers, who matched a four-year, $43 million offer sheet from Golden State for center DeAndre Jordan and picked up veteran point guard Chauncey Billups via the league's new amnesty waiver wire.
The renewed discussions came just hours after a proposed deal fell apart because, according to sources, the NBA's asking price for Paul was simply too steep.
The dynamics of a possible deal have clearly changed now, with one source close to the situation saying the league has taken over almost all negotiations while Hornets general manager Dell Demps has been relegated to a minimal role. The ripple effect around the league could be great, as teams steadily grow wary of dealing with the Hornets and many executives become convinced the league won't deal fairly.
SI.com reported Monday that the deal was in the "final stages" of completion after the teams rekindled discussions Sunday afternoon. The
A source close to Bledsoe said late that night that he was under the impression a deal had been agreed to and that he would likely be traded to the Hornets. When reached by phone late Sunday and asked if an agreement in principle had been reached, Clippers president Andy Roeser declined comment to SI.com.
The proposed deal was submitted to the league's front office for approval Monday morning. In any other case, it would have been a mere formality that the deal be presented to the team's owner. But having commissioner David Stern as the Hornets' de facto owner added a strange twist to the story, especially after the NBA vetoed the team's first attempt at dealing Paul, to the Lakers.
Paul is known to be open to joining the Clippers long-term, but the supporting cast was likely taken into consideration when engaging in discussions with a franchise that has been a laughingstock for so long. While reigning Rookie of the Year Blake Griffin is the centerpiece of the team's new core, Gordon -- whom the Clippers did not want to give up when the two teams talked last week, according to the
On Sunday, Jordan signed a four-year, $43 million offer sheet from Golden State, giving the Clippers three days to match the offer. SI.com confirmed Monday evening that the Clippers matched the offer and retained their center.
Also on Monday,