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#pounditWednesday, September 22, 2021

Chris Paul to become free agent after turning down $44 million option

Chris Paul Suns

Chris Paul had a massive player option on his contract for the 2021-22 season, but the star point guard is opting for free agency.

Paul has declined the $44.2 million player option on his contract as expected, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic. The 11-time All-Star will now become a free agent.

Paul is 36, which is why some people thought he would be better off exercising the option. However, he had an excellent season with the Phoenix Suns and proved he is still capable of playing at a high level. NBA contracts are guaranteed, and it is all but certain that Paul will get a multi-year deal worth more than $44.2 million in total. He will likely end up with a bigger payday by choosing free agency, even if his average annual salary is far less than what he would have made under the player option.

The Suns want to keep Paul, as he was a valuable leader for them and a big reason why they reached the NBA Finals. CP3 averaged 16.4 points and 8.9 assists per game during the regular season. He then scored 19.2 points and had 8.6 assists per game during Phoenix’s deep postseason run. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the Suns are optimistic they can work out a new deal with Paul.

Paul should receive numerous offers, though one team seems to keep coming up as having the potential to lure him away from Phoenix.

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