2 years ago the Houston Rockets traded Chris Paul for a hefty price:
Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams, Sam Dekker, Montrezl Harrell, Darrun Hilliard, DeAndre Liggins, Kyle Wiltjer, a protected first-round pick next year and cash considerations.
The Los Angeles Clippers obviously are still seeing the benefits from all of their new faces, and it seemed that the Rockets came out smelling like roses as well before this season.
CP3 has missed 48 games as a Rocket due to either injury or suspension. Additionally, this season showed a heavy decline in stats from last season.
The Rockets came close last year to dethroning the Warriors, but it was Chris Paul’s absence in Game 7 that seemed to be the demise of their run. This year, the Rockets got a blessing of playing Golden State in the second round with a fully healthy squad. Clint Capela even asked for the rematch in a post-game interview. Typically, James Harden is scrutinized as a choker, but this year it was his teammates who didn’t show.
After the Warriors knocked off the Rockets, it was reported Harden and Paul got into a fight about ball possession. That is not a great look for a duo who is supposed to be together till 2022.
In 2020, the Rockets will owe CP3 over $41 million and in 2021 over $44 million. He will be 37 by the time his current contract his up.
If Paul truly wanted to win, he should have taken a pay cut, especially with no income tax in Texas.
That begs the question: did the Rockets really win the trade back in 2017?
It appears Paul is not that great anymore, certainly not performing at an All-Star level. GM Daryl Morey stated that he is open to a firesale on the Rockets’ roster since the dust from the drama has settled.
It was reported today that Mike D’antoni broke off contract extension discussions too. Could this mean the beginning of the end for this entire group?
The future is looking really shaky for Houston. This summer and free agency will be the true show of the NBA, not the Finals. The landscape of the NBA is about to change and the Rockets need a plan fast.