Jared Dudley: Chris Paul Without Dwight Howard Would Make Lakers Worse

According to Yahoo! Sports, Chris Paul is headed to the Lakers. The proposed deal will send Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom to the Hornets in exchange for CP3. The Houston Rockets could also be involved. The details will soon be hashed out, but it appears phase one of the Lakers makeover is complete.  With Andrew Bynum not a part of the reported trade, it would stand to reason that he could be a centerpiece for another trade that would bring Dwight Howard to L.A.

Assuming all the information is accurate, the first (only?) trade raises an interesting point.  As I Am a GM shared with us, Suns forward Jared Dudley provided his opinion on the rumors via his Twitter account Thursday.  Does he have a point?

“I’m hearing all this chatter about CP3 to the Lakers and Pau to (Houston),” Dudley wrote. “I’m telling you now if they do that and don’t get Howard then (they’re) worse.”

If the Paul trade is indeed what Wojnarowski says it is, common sense would tell you the Lakers intend to use Bynum as a facilitator for adding Howard.  But what if it doesn’t happen?  If for some reason the Lakers are unable to pull off a trade for Superman, did they just make themselves worse?

L.A. has obviously improved their backcourt, but they would need to add a role player or two to compensate for their lack of size.  In fact, even if they trade for Howard they will still be smaller than they were last season, and front court depth has been one of their strengths.  Obviously exchanging Gasol, Odom, and Bynum for Paul and Howard yields more talent, but the Lakers are giving up an awful lot of size and depth in their front court.

Given Bynum’s injury history and inconsistency, the Lakers are now in a position where they have to find a way to acquire Howard.  If they can, they will immediately become the favorite to win it all this season and possibly for years to come — size or no size.

Orlando Billboard Pushes for Magic to Trade for Chris Paul (Picture)

Dwight Howard is going to stay with the Magic and Chris Paul is going to join him.  Actually, the Lakers are going to pull off a trade centered around Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol that brings both Howard and Paul to L.A.  Come to think of it, CP3 is gung ho to play for the Knicks, meaning no team will want to trade for him if they can’t sign him to an extension.  Superman will probably join him in New York.  The Celtics are looking to trade Rajon Rondo for Paul and might also be interested in signing Dwight next offseason.  Don’t count out Jay-Z, however — he might have interest, too.

Amidst all this insane speculation in which one scenario is no less likely than the next, you can’t say the people of Orlando aren’t trying.  Check out this billboard that @DavidBaumann33 shared with us:

Don’t laugh.  Broncos fans got what they wanted via the billboard route.  Chicago Bears fans are still waiting, but it has worked before and it could work again.  Thankfully, we should have some clarity by the end of the month.  Maybe.

H/T Alex Kennedy

Chris Paul Reportedly Requests Trade to Knicks, Wants to Team with Dwight Howard

It looks like Chris Paul has finally told the Hornets what we’ve known for a long time: he wants to play for the Knicks. Last summer at Carmelo Anthony’s wedding, CP3 reportedly had toasted to him, Amare, and Melo forming a Big Three in New York. Now that Paul’s entering the final year of his contract with New Orleans, he’s reportedly making it clear that this will be his last year playing for them.

Paul’s agent reportedly told the Hornets that his client won’t sign an extension with them, and that he wants to play with the Knicks. Yahoo! Sports also reports that Paul reached out to Dwight Howard, who will also be a free agent, to say they need to figure out a way to play together.

The problem in this scenario is that it would be difficult for the Knicks to add both players, let alone Paul. The Knicks already have nearly $40 million committed to Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire next season, and the price rises the following few years. They wouldn’t be able to offer Paul maximum money, so they’d have to get creative in order to sign him.

If Paul prioritizes playing with Dwight Howard over playing for the Knicks, that might be easier to arrange. For starters, the Lakers reportedly are interested in adding both players, and have the assets to make reasonable trade offers to the Magic and Hornets, respectively.

As we said in February, the Knicks could compete with the Heat if they landed Paul or Deron Williams, the other top point guard who will be available. And if the Lakers got both players, they might be the favorite to win the title.

Lakers Reportedly Interested in Adding Chris Paul and Dwight Howard

With the NBA offseason having been shortened significantly, we can expect the rumor mill to be churning out stories at three times the usual rate. After all, this thing has to be sorted out within a month. Any rumor is a possibility, so writers are going to print it. That being said, the Lakers are reportedly interested in acquiring both Chris Paul and Dwight Howard. While that is nothing more than a rumor at this point, they could conceivably pull it off.

As former Lakers beat writer Mark Heisler wrote on SheridanHoops.com Tuesday, making both Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol available could put the Lakers in the running to land Paul and Howard via trade. It should also be noted that Howard was asked last season which All-Star he’d most like to play with to which he responded, “Kobe Bryant.” Not that anyone would have to be convinced to go to the Lakers, anyway.

Of course, the Nets and Clippers are both expected to make serious offers for Howard with the rest of the NBA also testing the waters. CP3 is reportedly drawing interest from the Celtics as well, who could offer Rajon Rondo as part of a package. Boston has also been mentioned a few times in the Howard discussion.

For those wondering how the next Big Three of Kobe, Super Man, and CP3 would work out financially, look no further than the Lakers’ new television contract that will kick in next season.  The NBA’s new collective bargaining agreement is particularly harsh with regard to the luxury tax, but L.A.’s profit is expected to skyrocket with the new deal in place.  As Heisler pointed out, when the Lakers begin their 20-year, $3 billion contract with Time Warner they will be making $150 million a year from their television deal as opposed to $30 million before.  Their annual profit, which was $45-60 million, could climb as high as $170 million annually.

In other words if it’s possible, they can afford it.  A core of Bryant, Howard, and Paul would be a nice way to kick off the post-Phil Jackson era.

H/T to CBSSports.com’s Eye on Basketball Blog for the story

Video Highlights from Melo League vs. Goodman League Exhibition Game

Several NBA stars got together Tuesday night in Baltimore for a Melo League vs. Goodman League exhibition game at Morgan State University. As we told you on Saturday, Kevin Durant headlined the Goodman League team while LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, and Chris Paul all starred for the Melo League squad. The Melo All-Stars won 149-141, getting 38 from LeBron and 36 from Carmelo. Kevin Durant lit it up for 59 points in a losing cause, representing the Washington D.C.-based team.

Here are some video highlights from the event shared by Ben Golliver at CBS Sports:

As you could tell, there wasn’t much defense being played (what gave that away, the 290 combined points scored?). Fans reportedly paid as much as $100 for tickets, so there’s little doubt they were excited to see offensive highlights. One fan even took video and got a little too excited about a Kevin Durant three pointer over LeBron. Check out the video:

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Chris Paul Interview Video – I’d Hit my Momma on the Court

Postgame interviews can be quite entertaining — just ask Kevin Garnett — but rarely do they generate not one, but TWO headline-worthy stories. After leading the Hornets to a Game 4 victory over the Lakers on Easter Sunday, Chris Paul spoke with Cheryl Miller and not only did he say he’d treat his mother like the enemy on the court, but he also dropped a “pause.” Check it out:

And if you don’t understand the whole “pause” reference, read this.

Chris Paul Collision Video Looked Worse than it Was

The New Orleans Hornets were wearing their Mardi Gras jerseys on Sunday against the Cavaliers but it wasn’t a party for star point guard Chris Paul. Midway through the third quarter CP3 was penetrating when he lost a handle on the ball and collided with Ramon Sessions trying to get it back. It was a nasty collision that looked awful, and it resulted in Paul getting carted off. Here’s the Chris Paul collision video:

Though Paul was carted off the court, he gave the thumbs up sign almost to indicate too big of a production was being made of his collision. Tests came back negative and Paul even flew out with his team to Chicago though he’ll miss the next game. He was diagnosed with a concussion and those can be tricky. It’s been enough to keep Sidney Crosby out for two months in Pittsburgh and enough to keep Justin Morneau out half a year for the Twins. Let’s hope Paul makes a quicker comeback than some other athletes do from concussions.

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