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I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least mention the possible (although not probable) flight risk of both Chris Paul and Dwight Howard in 2013.
Paul is the best point guard in the game today and Howard is the best center. If the NBA has taught us anything in recent years, it’s that the superstars have all the leverage. If they ultimately decide they’d rather play elsewhere, Los Angeles could be left high and dry.
Will this happen in 2013? Well, Howard has shown that he’s a loose cannon from his time in Orlando, but the chances that Howard or Paul leave L.A. seem remote.
As originally reported by Jarrod Rudolph, confirmed by Chris Broussard of ESPN and referenced by Kurt Helin of NBC Sports, Howard plans to re-sign with the Lakers long-term following the 2012-13 NBA season.
Despite the widespread reports that Howard plans to re-sign with the Lakers long-term, the “following the 2012-13 season” part is important.
According to an article by NBC Sports’ Kurt Helin citing a report by ESPN’s Chris Broussard, Paul has already declined a three-year max money extension from the Los Angeles Clippers.
This doesn’t necessarily mean CP3 plans to skip town, but with the new quirks of the CBA, Paul can get a more lucrative deal if he waits until the end of the season to sign. The same situation goes for Howard. If he waits until season’s end to re-sign with the Lakers, he’ll get more years and more money.
Of course, an article by SI.com referenced a tweet by New York Knicks’ beat writer Frank Isola, who said NBA executives think Paul wants to join the Knicks. So there are rumors Paul could leave the Clippers for a different situation next summer.
Again, the flight risk associated with these two stars isn’t overwhelming, but it’s worth noting in the wild and crazy NBA.