Boston Discusses Trading Rajon Rondo For Chris Paul; The Clippers Want To Pair Dwight Howard With Blake Griffin

By: 11.30.11  •  46 Comments

Yesterday’s ambush of trade and free agency talk tipped off with a rather awkward rumor: The Celtics weren’t actively shopping Rajon Rondo, but that they’d be open to a deal should anything materialize. In the sports world, that’s basically code for other teams to start calling so they can start the bidding. Danny Ainge and Boston were hinting at something. We just didn’t know what it was yet. So naturally the response from most fans was: WTF? It didn’t help that Rajon Rondo trade rumors are an offseason rite of passage by this point. It doesn’t feel right unless we get a few of them. The Celtics have told Rondo they haven’t been looking to deal him, and then Sean Deveney of the Sporting News tweeted: I am told that the chances of the Celtics actually trading Rondo are “minimal.” Source says, “They’d ask for the sky.” Well the rumor being reported now is the largest/most important one we’ve seen, and if it went through, the Celtics would get more than just the sky. Sam Amick of reports that the player the Celtics wanted all along – the guy Ainge has had discussions about – is none other than Chris Paul. There’s an interesting history here. First of all, CP and Rondo have always carried a healthy beef, going at each other in every matchup and even during one game, that boiled over into a near fight. Plus even more importantly, Ainge and the Celtics very nearly traded Paul Pierce for CP on his draft night. That was the plan. At this point, the Hornets want to involve a third team to get more assets, and Boston is still trying to figure out if Paul would agree to stay long-term in Boston. At least for the time being, it’s doubtful any move involving the Hornets’ franchise goes down. The NBA runs New Orleans at this point, and the last thing they need is another PR situation involving a big star going to a huge market. Behind closed doors, we bet they’d love it. But in the public eye, it’d be a blow to the perceived “success” of the lockout, as well as a failure to keep a quality team together in New Orleans. Paul told reporters yesterday that his heart is in New Orleans. But a squad featuring Paul, Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett could definitely win another title just as long as they replace everyone’s knees. We can’t figure out which player scenario intrigues us more: this CP stuff (New York or Boston?), or Dwight Howard … Because we’ve all heard the Dwight-to-L.A. storyline for about a year now, but no one ever really considered the JVs might land him instead. That’s right, Chris Broussard reports that the Clippers are ready to do whatever it takes (besides parting with Blake Griffin) to bring Dwight Howard to L.A., and throw on their uniform instead of the purple and gold. And while playing for a racist owner probably isn’t on Howard’s bucket list, he really needs to look at this. The Clippers – with a consent from Howard that he would sign there – probably have as much to offer Orlando as anyone. They have Eric Gordon, Mo Williams, DeAndre Jordan, Eric Bledsoe, Chris Kaman and Al-Farouq Aminu. BUNDLES of young (or not old) talent. Imagine a BG/Dwight frontline? We don’t even know where to start. If winning in basketball is all about controlling the paint and rebounding, then a frontline of Superman, Quake Griffin and freakin’ one of us could be scooping up titles … Nene‘s name is on everyone’s mind right now with nearly half the league set to line up at his doorstep the minute free agency begins. Because of that, and because we can almost guarantee it’ll happen, Nene made our list of the five free agents who will most likely end up being overpaid. Another center we nearly put on the list was Tyson Chandler, who is going to cash in very soon off Dallas’ championship … Other rumors floating around: Utah isn’t set on using the amnesty clause on Mehmet Okur…if Brandon Roy is let go, the Warriors want to sign him…and the Thunder don’t have a problem at all giving Russell Westbrook a max deal to re-up in OKC … Hit page two to hear about how Duke got embarrassed, and the classic Gary Payton sneakers he says are coming back …

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