Breaking news from Adrian Wojnarowski. The Phoenix Suns are finalizing a deal to acquire Chris Paul from the Oklahoma City Thunder. Woj broke the news, as he normally does, via Twitter.
The details of the trade include the Suns sending Kelly Oubre, Ricky Rubio, Ty Jerome, Halen Leque and a 2021 first-round pick.
Shams Charania shed more light on to what exactly that first round pick given to OKC looks like.
This will be Christ Paul’s fourth team in his NBA career. Last season, Paul averaged nearly 18 points per game and 7 assists per game, good enough to get him into his 10th All-Star game. Paul also lead an astonishing run for the Thunder that saw them have some success in the postseason. A team that was not supposed to win more than 20 games turned into one of the more fun teams to watch this season, wining 44 games during the regular season.
The official nature of this trade effectively ends any thought of Paul joining his friend LeBron James in Los Angeles. But the Lakers seem to be doing just fine. Their recent acquiring of Dennis Schroder from the Thunder means that Paul was probably too much for the Lakers. Paul was also connected trade talks involving the Milwaukee Bucks.
The move can be seen by some as Phoenix thinking that they will be good enough to compete for a Western Conference playoff spot. The Suns finished an astonishing 8-0 in the Bubble games, but were just too far back to make the playoffs.
On the other hand, OKC is now going full rebuild. Last year was supposed to be a rebuild year but Paul helped in pushing that off. The Thunder have acquired over 16 first round picks in the upcoming drafts. It is a strategy that will take some time to see if it will work or not.
The hope is that pairing Paul with Suns young star Devin Booker will be enough to put them over the edge and compete. Time will see how well Paul and Booker mesh and if the gamble will pay off for Phoenix. The West continues to grow stronger and stronger every year.