Chris Paul has redeemed himself with the OKC Thunder this year. His reading of the game is as sharp as ever, his new diet has helped him play elongated minutes down the stretch, and he managed to remain fit for the course of the season. Most NBA trade rumors believe that CP3 is exactly what the Milwaukee Bucks need but moving for the 10-time All-Star won't be that simple.
Chris Paul is owed $85 million in the next two seasons but you can still make a case for how he'll impact the team beyond his performances on the court. But that's just the beginning of financial issues that could plague the Milwaukee Bucks soon.
NBA Trade Rumors: Acquiring Chris Paul could cripple Milwaukee Bucks financially
Tabling an offer for Chris Paul will not be the greatest of worries for the Milwaukee Bucks. The expiring deals of Ersan Ilyasova, Robin Lopez (if he opts in), and D.J. Wilson will surely play a part. Eric Bledsoe will also be involved to form the salary match. Since the Milwaukee Bucks don't have a lot of draft stock to add to the deal, they may have to part ways with youngster Donte DiVincenzo too.
The 2020-21 season will somehow work out for the Milwaukee Bucks. But the campaign following that will make the team executives sweat. Giannis Antetokounmpo's supermax extension will kick in considering he signs the 5-year deal that was originally supposed to be worth $247.3 million.
Even with the new salary cap projections that are likely to be revealed soon, that number won't be reduced by a significant chunk. And If you scrutinize the rest of the payroll, that's when you'll realize how strapped the Milwaukee Bucks will be.
Too many big contracts to deal with
Chris Paul will be owed $44 million in 2021-22 if he exercises his player option, which is very likely. Khris Middleton will be due $35.5 million, George Hill $10 million, and Brook Lopez over $13 million. Giannis will be making at least $40 million that year. That's an outlay of roughly $142 million on five players alone.
The Bucks are a small-market franchise and revenues have taken a huge hit due to the coronavirus. Sustaining such an expensive roster and adding useful pieces to make another title run would be very difficult. It could require overhauling the roster and getting rid of some of the key players mentioned above.
So is a trade for Chris Paul worth the tedious restructure the Milwaukee Bucks fill face the season after? That's something the front office needs to decide upon.
Published 10 Sep 2020, 06:00 IST