David Stern and the NBA Would Not Stop A Chris Paul Trade

Stern has left the Hornets to make their own choices

We’re still nine days off from free agent signings and trades being signed, sealed and official, yet the NBA world is on fire with Chris Paul trade rumors. Some are substantiated (the Celtics calling the Hornets), some just aren’t going to happen (the Knicks) and some are inevitably going to bubble up (the Clippers and Blazers).

If you’re a Hornets fan, the rumors are deafening. Maybe you tune it out and ignore them, staying off twitter and the NBA blogs (my preferred strategy, even though it’s nearly impossible). Or maybe you’re one who takes to defending the team; tweets, comments and facebook posts of The Knicks don’t have the cap room! Paul wont sign an extension with the Celtics! He loves New Orleans! I love it. I love your devotion. Please, keep sticking it to those annoying Knicks’ fans. Deep down they know they don’t have a chance at Paul. But I want to dispel one theory on why Paul isn’t going anywhere: That the NBA wont allow the team to trade him. Let’s do this…

When the NBA bought the team nearly a year ago one of my first thoughts was that this means Paul isn’t being traded. It’s logical. The NBA bought the team for $310 million and David Stern has said that the NBA wants to make a profit (I addressed this in Tuesday’s Hornets Beat over at Hornets247.com). Trading Paul certainly doesn’t increase the value of the team. The value of the Cleveland Cavaliers dropped around 125 million according to Forbes when Lebron James choose to sign with the Miami Heat. It’s simply not a good business decision to try and sell something and not include it’s best asset. You don’t see cars with bad engines being driven out of dealerships.

Let’s say the NBA wants to sell the team for $360 million (a $50 million profit), a potential owner is not going to submit a low-ball offer just because Paul is not on the team. There are 30 NBA teams; they are all highly attractive and coveted assets regardless of talent on the team. Many people would pay far more than $360 million in order to own an NBA team. Add the new CBA into the mix and the new split in BRI, and the value of the team has dramatically increased since the NBA bought out George Shinn. The NBA has no concerns over making a profit on the deal.

Furthermore, Stern has let the Hornets act almost completely autonomously. Yes, Jac Sperling is the league’s ambassador to the Hornets, but it’s still Hugh Weber, Dell Demps and Monty Williams making personnel and business decisions. Don’t forget that the Hornets added salary in the Carl Landry trade. When the NBA took over, no one thought they would be allowed to do that. Mark Cuban was vocally against the move (probably because the Mavs and Hornets play in the same division) but it still happened. Stern didn’t get on some secret, red telephone and call Weber to say he can’t make that trade. There is no way Stern would stop a Chris Paul trade with that precedent set.

Unfair trades happen all the time in the NBA. The reality is that you will never get full value if you trade a superstar. Bill Simmons refers to this all the time as getting 75 cents (or less) for a dollar. When Pau Gasol was traded the best player the Lakers gave up was Kwame Brown! No one came in and stopped that trade. This isn’t fantasy football where every team has a veto vote.

Demps is determined to get maximum value in return if he trades Paul, and the best offer may come while the NBA still owns the team. If that’s the case, Demps will have to pull the trigger on the trade. Fans will not be happy but unfortunately this is the reality of the situation.

So keep up defending the Hornets and the shooting down all of the trade rumors, just don’t use the NBA’s ownership as a reason.

Topics: Chris Paul, Ownership

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  • everydayraby

    They definitely won’t stop a trade. At the end of the day, the only person who can stop a trade is Chris Paul. And if he truly doesn’t want to stay in New Orleans, there’s not much anyone can do about it. As a Hornets fan, this kills me. But we can still survive. We need to find the best trade possible for the franchise. Picks and solid players are what we need. I want to keep believing that Chris will stay, but it’s getting harder and harder to believe.

  • JakeMadison

    @everydayraby It just got a lot harder to believe. I think picks and young players with potential (they dont even need to be solid yet) are what I would want.

  • jmurphynyc

    It’s pathetic if you don’t think he will end up with the Knicks eventually. Get out of denial

  • jmurphynyc

    Knicks dont have the cap room? Paul loves New Orleans? What planet are you people living on?

  • Murse

    The planet is called Earth and the real is called reality, I know Knicks fans mostly live in fantasy. The Knicks can offer AT MOST 13.5mil the 1st year, any other team with the cap room can offer up to 17.2, and the Hornets can offer 18.9 (AND bigger increases AND and extra year) Can you name a single star athlete (with or without several knee surgeries) that gave up THAT much money in the prime of his career? didn’t think so… @jmurphynyc

  • JakeMadison

    @Murse@jmurphynyc According to ESPN Paul wont force the Hornets to trade him to the Knicks since they don’t have the assets to trade for him.

  • jmurphynyc

    @Murse so you think Paul is staying in New Orleans? If you do then that’s just insane and I feel bad for you. He will take the 13.5 mil happily because New York athletes make so much more in endorsements than in any other city. Stoudemire made 6 mil in endorsements in all his years in PHX combined. Last year alone he made 25. David Wright made 22 in endorsements last year and he plays for a shitty baseball team. Their shoe contracts have huge inflations if they play in big markets. Of all the top NBA players, very few of them get more than 50% of their yearly earnings from their nba salaries. So to ask you, why in the world would he give up THAT much money to stay in shitty old New Orleans, a place with no hope of winning, and no fan base?

  • jmurphynyc

    @JakeMadison I think there is a better chance of just outright signing him next offseason no matter where he is traded at the deadline (Because he will be traded). He has wanted to be in NY for two years, what do think has happened to change his mind?

  • jmurphynyc

    @Murse also, Amare gave up an extra year and up to 20 mil on his contract by not signing with phx. Lebron could have gotten more money and years from cleveland. Same can be said for bosh and melo, yet they all left. If you think Paul is gonna sit around alone in NO while all these other stars are teaming up then you’re senile…but hey, the saints are good, right

  • Murse

    Again, living in fantasy… I never said that he’s going to stay in NO, I simply seriously doubt that if he’s not traded to the Knicks, that he give up ALL that money, which is HUGE. BTW, NY has the highest cost of living of any NBA city, and is also taxed a lot more too. Do you even know how much these athletes make in endorsements? Compare what he could make in a small market to what he could make in NY, then subtract the extra cost of living, and the taxes, and the discount he would have to take to sign there, and he loses money. And get your facts straight, Amare went to NY b/c they were the only team to offer him a max deal, Phoenix was unwilling. Amare got the non-Bird max, same as Carmelo. Lebron and Bosh took a paycut of 1.5mil compared to the non-Bird max of other cities, not >$5mil EACH YEAR Paul would have to take from the Knicks. If he’s not traded there, he’s not signing there and losing $40million and the extra year (how many surgeries has he had on those knees?) That extra year makes a difference.

    @Murse

  • Murse

    Pretend you’re a minute that you’re Chris Paul, you can your friends Amare and MElo planned to join up in NY. Amarea and Melo took max money, about $20mil per season, leaving you to average $14mil/per. How happy would you be to have to take a large paycut when your friends didn’t take a penny less than their maximums for your sake> @jmurphynyc

  • jmurphynyc

    @Murse If you’re banking on the idea that he wont go to NY because the cost of living is too high then you truly are out of your mind. Why would any athlete go to NY then? You also said “Compare what he could make in a small market to what he could make in NY, then subtract the extra cost of living, and the taxes, and the discount he would have to take to sign there, and he loses money.” That is utterly retarded on many different levels. New York athletes bring in the most total income of any other city. And looking up endorsements isn’t that hard, there was a list on yahoo not too long ago and it’s a fact that endorsement deals have options in them that skyrocket the annual salary if they move into a bigger market. Even Chris Broussard who knows way more than us fans said the Knicks have a great chance of getting Paul. RIc Bucher said he would bet his house on it. The new CBA also factors in. There is no advantage to signing an extension, he can only max out for 2 years, where in free agency he can get 4. BUT after the 1st year he can sign an extension and get 2 extra years. But all of that aside, what do you think he his gonna do if he doesnt go to NY? He clearly isnt gonna stay in a small market, he’d be nuts to do that. No one other than Duncan has done that and he had already won a championship when he decided to stay. Is he gonna go to LA? They have more money on the books in the future than the Knicks do..same can be said about Dallas and Miami. The Bulls already have Rose and The Nets are looking to re-sign D-Will. He has already said he doesnt want any part of Boston….where is he going to other than NY?

  • jmurphynyc

    @Murse I’ll fight through whatever language that was to answer simply. That’s life with the new CBA. It’s no secret that the gravy train the players had has been semi-reduced at least for the moment. But again, these big time NBA players dont rely on their NBA salaries to make up most of their annual incomes. They make so much ridiculous money off of endorsements that all the money they have lost with the new CBA can be made up. He wants to be part of a relevant team that isnt lost in exile in New Orleans. The Hornets dont have fans, or even owners right now. Why in the world would he want to be part of that? Him and Howard are both going to leave and they are right to do so.

  • JamesGrayson

    @jmurphynyc I really do pity your ignorance. It’s typical for fans of other teams to not take much interest in other teams situations. But, since you Knicks fans are so hellbent on getting Chris Paul (which is reasonable, who wouldn’t want the guy?) it would be courteous for you to at least investigate our franchises situation before you go based on presumptions.

    The Hornets have sold the SECOND MOST season tickets since the end of last season, behind only the Clippers. They are currently about to reach over 10,000.

    The Hornets have in place a local ownership group ready to step up and buy the team, but not before a new lease, which as we Hornets bloggers understand is going to come out soon with a new naming rights deal for the New Orleans Arena estimated at 30 million dollars.

    The Hornets were not one of the worst teams in debt over the past year like so many assume.

    We have fans, lots of them and we’re about to get new local owners.

  • jmurphynyc

    @JamesGrayson I pity you for being as naive as you are. At least over the last decade when the knicks were a joke the fans were educated enough to realize it and didnt just cover their ears and tell themselves whatever they wanted to hear…The Hornets were 26th in attendance last year so when people think they have no fans, thats why…and a 30 million dollar naming agreement is actually pretty pathetic in comparison to other naming rights deals (the grizzlies got over 50 mil and they are in the same boat as the hornets market-wise). Do you really expect the clips and hornets to stay 1 and 2, we are 3 weeks away from opening day. You dont think the knicks, bulls, lakers, celtics etc are all going to blow past them in the upcoming weeks? Having potential owners isnt the same as having an owner. I’m sure you already know that there will be many hurdles to clear before a new ownership team can be implemented. Plus, one of the reasons the franchise might be more enticing is because of the increased revenue sharing that they will be getting from teams like the knicks. The Hornets cant compete by themselves so their big brothers have to pitch in to help them compete…now thats pathetic. You can try and sugar coat the franchise all you want, but it is not in a good place right now and CP3 knows that as well as anyone….bottom line question, opening day of the 2012-2013 season, where will Chris Paul be playing? Please answer that part