Timberwolves Among Favorites to Land Chris Paul if Suns Move Him

AP Photo: Matt York

The Minnesota Timberwolves’ season has been over for weeks so much of the news and rumors surrounding our local pro basketball team have died down recently. The same cannot be said for Chris Paul and the Phoenix Suns, who were just eliminated Thursday night, after a game-6 loss in the 2nd round at the hands of the Denver Nuggets.

Chris Paul reportedly on his way out of Phoenix

In classic NBA fashion, rumors started spreading immediately after last night’s game that Suns point guard Chris Paul is on his way out of Phoenix. He and DeAndre Ayton, according to reports, may have played their last game in Suns jerseys. New owner, Mat Ishbia, wants to clear salary so he can build better depth around Devin Booker and Kevin Durant.

There is also wondering around the NBA, according to league sources, about whether Chris Paul and Deandre Ayton — two players who were driving forces in Phoenix’s run to the 2021 NBA Finals but were sidelined for Thursday’s elimination game — will wear a Suns uniform again.

Tim MacMahon – ESPN
Minnesota Timberwolves favorites to land CP3

And because the year is 2023, sportsbooks across the internet have taken the Chris Paul fodder into a possible moneymaker, using their massive depth of inside sources and information to attach odds to where Paul will go next.

One well-known betting institution, BetOnline.ag, has the Minnesota Timberwolves owning 4/1 odds (2nd-best in the NBA) at landing the Suns’ aging superstar point guard, should he depart the desert. The Lakers have slightly better odds, at 3/1. Other teams in the CP3 running include the Clippers (6/1), 76ers (7/1) and Heat (8/1).

Does Chris Paul to Wolves make sense?

Paul has two seasons remaining on his current contract, a deal that is set to expire when CP3 is 39 years old. But, only half of next year’s salary (about $15 million) is guaranteed. The 2nd season has zero guaranteed dollars on the books.

So financially, trading for Chris Paul is probably feasible. Especially since Karl-Anthony Towns’ new supermax contract ($50 million per season) doesn’t kick in until 2024-25 and Anthony Edwards is still cheap.

But the Wolves already have Mike Conley on the books for next season, for slightly less than what CP3 is scheduled to make, and he seemed to work really well with Rudy Gobert. Would Tim Connelly & Co mess with that, in favor of another once-great but now aging point guard? Or would he be better off running things back as is?

I wouldn’t think so, but major sportsbooks usually know much better than I do.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan

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