Chris Paul, as one of the best basketball players on the planet, was the headliner of the deal between the Los Angeles Clippers and Houston Rockets in late June. Pairing Paul with James Harden is a wildly intriguing move for an already interesting team in Houston and, even with a quality package coming back to Los Angeles, it makes sense that the lion’s share of the focus was on what is expected to be the better team with the Rockets.
However, Patrick Beverley was the centerpiece of the return for Paul and the veteran point guard is both productive and underpaid. That makes the revelation that Beverley unleashed to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN on the Woj Pod all the more interesting, in that Beverley declared he actually asked for a trade away from Houston prior to the transaction.
“I asked for it. I asked for a bigger opportunity, a bigger chance to display my skills on a high level. I was fortunate that the Rockets did really good with me and put me in a situation where I could thrive and be successful. They could have dumped me anywhere, but they did (me) right and I respect them a lot for it.”
Beverley is the type of player that will remain perpetually underrated by the casual NBA fan, largely because his biggest impact comes on the defensive end of the floor. Still, he is certainly a starting-caliber player making backup-level money and the Rockets likely hated parting ways with him, even for a massive return in Paul.
Beyond that, though, it is very interesting that both the request and trade occurred without this information leaking out and, even when Beverley released it, the nugget came in passing as part of an extensive interview. Of course, that won’t stop the NBA world from flocking toward this kind of tidbit in the aftermath but both the Rockets (for executing) and Beverley (for keeping things under wraps) should be commended for their actions in this case.
Beverley even acknowledges the part that Daryl Morey and company played in a positive way and the final result was a positive one for both sides.
The former Houston guard will take the reins of a riveting situation in Los Angeles. Alongside Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan and Doc Rivers, he will have the opportunity to step out of James Harden’s show as more of a primary facilitator offensively and that alone could help to send his reputation soaring if things go well in the country’s second-largest market.