“When Chris says he wants to be traded, how’s that going to go? Someone’s going to have to make a very nonjudemental decision on that part that’s not going to irritate anyone else in the league.” – Phil Jackson
According to Yahoo! Sports, David Stern has killed the Chris Paul three way trade. NBA owners have reportedly pressured Stern to kill the deal.
Chris Broussard on SportsCenter put the “snag-blame” on the Lakers saying the deal has “hit a snag” because the Lakers now want a big man to bring along with Chris Paul. “There are some serious things that need to be worked out,” Broussard said.
Question: How can Hornets GM Dell Demps effectively do his job knowing David Stern killed a deal that would have brought New Orleans Kevin Martin, Lamar Odom, Luis Scola, Goran Dragic and Houston’s first round pick (obtained from the Knicks)?
Answer: That is a serious haul for one player. Demps did a fine job obtaining talent in a difficult situation. The NBA just got out of a lockout because most of the GMs in the NBA could not pull off the kind of haul Demps received…and you kill it? Are you insane?
Now, if the Lakers are indeed holding up the trade because they had second thoughts and are now demanding a big man, that is one thing. But for the NBA commissioner, on the day the new CBA was ratified, to undermine the GM of a NBA team because a few owners bitched and moaned is beyond me. It’s sad actually. David Stern has all but lost control of his league if he will bow down to the other 29 owners. The Hornets need to find an owner, and the NBA needs a new commissioner.
Question: If the NBA was going to kill a trade involving Chris Paul and the Lakers, why would they allow the Hornets GM to negotiate with said team?!
Answer: David Stern clearly did not think this through long-term, and by long-term I mean 15 minutes. The backlash has hit Twitter, it’s hit Facebook and worst of all it ruined a great overall basketball day. I told my friends “Lockout, what lockout?” Now they can say, “That lockout.”
Question: What’s next?
Answer: I honestly do not know what the end game is here. Do the Hornets have to trade with another team? Can they still talk to Houston? Are they banned from trading with the Lakers? Do they have to lose CP3 outright? These are questions we shouldn’t be asking right now.
Question: Can the commissioner legally do this?
Answer: I fucking hope not. But according to the NBA constitution, he can block trades for the “best interest of the game.”
Question: Does the league office have a leg to stand on by blocking the deal citing “basketball reasons?”
Answer: No in the court of public opinion. Citing “basketball reasons” is utterly ridiculous in this case. The league MUST give us specifics. Basketball reasons? Not possible. This was a good basketball trade. Conflict of interest? When you preach competitive balance and then the Lakers land Chris Paul and possibly Dwight Howard, you do what you can to stop it, right? That is what Stern did. He blocked the trade because HE looked bad. Now the entire league will suffer the consequences.