The Los Angeles Clippers will trade point guard Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets, The Vertical's Adrian Wojnarowski reports.
Paul was set to become a free agent, and reportedly informed teams he would sign with the Rockets. He then chose to opt in on the final year of his contract (worth $24 million) so that the Clippers could trade him to Houston, in exchange for Patrick Beverley, Sam Dekker, Lou Williams and L.A.'s top-three protected 2018 first round pick, according to Wojnarowski.
Wojnarowski reported that Paul and James Harden were “determined” to play together.
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The deal leaves the Clippers' future further up in the air, with Blake Griffin set to become a free agent. J.J. Redick will also be a free agent, and DeAndre Jordan's name has been mentioned in trade rumors.
Paul, 32, is a nine-time All-Star and considered one of the best point guards in the league. He will pair with Harden to give Houston one of the league's top backcourts.
Paul averaged 18.1 points, 9.2 assists and five rebounds last season. The Clippers acquired him in 2011 days after a trade originally sending him to the Lakers was vetoed. In his six seasons with the Clippers, L.A. went a combined 313–163 (including five straight 50-win seasons after the first was shortened by the 2011 lockout), but never made it past the Western Conference semifinals.