Clippers Among Teams With Interest In Chris Paul

A return to the Clippers is possible for Chris Paul this summer, Marc Stein writes in his latest Substack column.

Sources tell Stein that L.A. is among several teams that would be interested in the 39-year-old point guard if he becomes a free agent. Paul spent six years with the franchise and was one of the stars of the “Lob City” era.

Stein previously cited the Lakers and Spurs as potential landing spots for the 12-time All-Star. Paul told reporters last month that he doesn’t plan to retire after Golden State lost in the play-in tournament, and coach Steve Kerr expressed a desire to keep him, saying, “He’s still got good years left.” Paul prefers to stay close to his family in Los Angeles, Stein adds.

Stein cautions that reaching free agency will be the first step for Paul, who has a non-guaranteed $30MM salary for next season. He has an early salary guarantee date of June 28, so the Warriors have a little more than a month to decide whether he’s worth that investment. Stein points out that Golden State’s options include guaranteeing Paul’s salary and trading him to another team. The guarantee date could be extended, but that would require Paul’s consent.

Paul appeared in 58 games and made 18 starts this season after being traded twice last summer. He averaged 9.2 points, 3.9 rebounds and 6.8 assists in 26.4 minutes per night while shooting 44.1% from the field and 37.1% from three-point range.

Stein’s sources say another possibility for the Clippers is Kyle Lowry, who turned 38 in March. Lowry will be an unrestricted free agent after finishing the season with the Sixers, who signed him in February following a buyout with Charlotte.

The Clippers’ summer moves will be affected by Russell Westbrook‘s decision on a $4MM player option, Stein adds. The 35-year-old point guard, who has spent the past season and a half with the team, has until June 29 to determine whether he wants to opt out and test free agency.

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