After rumors of issues between Chris Paul and Austin Rivers surfaced following CP3's trade from the Los Angeles Clippers to the Houston Rockets, Paul and Rivers discussed the situation in a phone conversation.
According to Sam Amick of USA Today, Rivers offered an account of the discussion:
"I called Chris and was like, 'Chris, what’s going on?' Chris is like, 'This is the biggest bull[expletive] I've ever seen in my life.' Chris was just like, 'This is a joke.' So I asked him, I'm like, 'You don't need to come out and say nothing publicly, I don't need you to do that. It's just going to make it even more, now they're going to drag it out two more days. I'll take it. I don't care. I've been dealing with this [dynamic] since I was six [years old]. I really don't even care.'"
ESPN SportsCenter anchor Michael Eaves wrote on Facebook following the trade that Clippers head coach Doc Rivers' favoritism toward his son, Austin, was a contributing factor in Paul's desire to leave.
While there was no shortage of theories why Paul opted to leave L.A., Austin Rivers said it was simply a case of wanting a new challenge and a change of scenery: "What do I have to do with someone else's move? Chris wanted to move because he'd been [with the Clippers] for a while. He's had great years there, but he wanted something new. A lot of players want that. It's really that simple."
Rather than allowing Paul to walk for no return, the Clippers traded him to Houston for a sizable package of players and picks that included guards Lou Williams and Patrick Beverley, and forwards Sam Dekker and Montrezl Harrell.
The 32-year-old Paul spent six seasons with the Clippers, and although he made five All-Star teams during that time, L.A. never advanced past the second round of the playoffs.
Rivers came to the Clippers in a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans in 2014-15, and although the father-son dynamic with Doc has led to criticism, he has grown as a player with the Clips.
The former Duke standout averaged a career-high 12.0 points and 2.8 assists per game last season, and he promises to be a significant part of L.A.'s backcourt in 2017-18 with CP3 out of the equation.