There are conflicting reports on what the Suns intend to do with future Hall-of-Famer Chris Paul.
Although Chris Haynes recently reported that the Suns plan to waive Paul’s partially guaranteed contract, Duane Rankin of The Arizona Republic hears from sources who say Phoenix is still evaluating its options with the veteran point guard. Paul remains on the roster for now.
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, the Suns spoke to Paul’s agent on Wednesday and let him know they want to find a mutually beneficial resolution. Charania reports that a trade, waiving and stretching Paul’s contract, and waiving Paul outright and possibly re-signing him are among the options being considered.
One notable option that Charania did not mention is fully guaranteeing Paul’s $30.8MM contract for 2023/24, which is currently partially guaranteed for $15.8MM (it’s non-guaranteed for $30MM in ’24/25). The 38-year-old’s salary would become fully guaranteed if he’s not waived on or before June 28, but that doesn’t sound like it’s on the table for the Suns.
As of now, sources tell Wojnarowski that Paul wants to return to Phoenix and play with Devin Booker and Kevin Durant. However, Paul and his representatives would like the Suns to find a quick solution, particularly if he’s waived, even though they’re technically under no obligation to do so.
There’s an expectation that the Suns will use the stretch provision on Paul’s deal if he does end up getting cut, Wojnarowski writes. That would spread his $15.8MM cap hit over five seasons, for annual charge of $3.16MM. Paul would be ineligible to re-sign with Phoenix in that scenario.
Plugged-in local radio host John Gambadoro of Arizona Sports 98.7 FM also disputes Haynes’ report, tweeting that the Suns haven’t yet decided what they’re going to do with Paul.