The team says they're not trading him. Yet just about every executive in the NBA says they have talked to the New Orleans Hornets about Chris Paul.
Paul told ESPN's Chris Broussard Wednesday that he'd be willing to look at a trade if he's sent to a winner.
So let's put together the dream for Paul. Where's the right spot?
There's plenty of good deals out there for the Hornets, but this is about Paul.
What are the best scenarios to get him the title he so dearly covets?
Blame for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution for unleashing this dream scenario on the world.
The Hawks deal Josh Smith for Paul, then they re-sign Joe Johnson and attract LeBron to town.
The problem is there's not a lot of money to build anything from there.
It is a dream for sure. But listen, this whole Paul trade talk could be wishful thinking.
It would certainly make sense for Paul to be surrounded by Al Horford, James, and Johnson.
I just don't think the Hawks have the stones or the cash to pull it off.
This is another work in progress.
The Knicks have next to nothing to offer the Hornets.
But if we're talking about what would make the most sense for Paul, New York's a great spot.
Sign James and re-sign David Lee or get Chris Bosh and you have something to work with. But it's not enough.
The Magic have reportedly offered Jameer Nelson and Vince Carter for Paul and James Posey.
I don't think there's enough in Orlando to attract Paul. Sure, he's got Dwight Howard. But around them is an aging core that came up short in their prime.
It's not a move I would make if I was Paul.
They are the ones that started the bulk of the hullabaloo this week with word that they had offered O.J. Mayo for Paul.
So what if that was the option? Owner Michael Heisley has done nothing to show Grizzlies fans or the NBA that he's willing or capable of putting together a winner in Memphis.
Still, Zach Randolph, Rudy Gay (if he re-signs), Ronnie Brewer (if he re-signs) and Marc Gasol would give Paul an excellent five-year run at a title.
This is one of those situations that needs to develop.
If the Heat dealt Michael Beasley and Mario Chalmers, cash and two future draft picks, the value could match up.
But what does that leave Miami with? The hope from there is you get D-Wade back, attract LeBron or Chris Bosh to town and re-sign Udonis Haslem and Jermaine O'Neal.
That's a lot of hoping though. If the Heat were able to send the first shot over the bow here by convincing Paul's people to make the deal (and the Hornets) they would set the dominoes in motion to pull off the impossible.
If I'm the Hornets, I love this deal. Devon Harris and the No. 3 pick for Paul?
It works for Paul. He is set up in an organization that is truly committed to winning and pumping oodles of money to make it happen.
The pieces outside of Courtney Lee and Brook Lopez aren't there, but they might come in free agency.
You just don't want this if you're Paul.
Yes, you have Brandon Roy and Jerrod Bayless and Camby and Aldridge. You have an owner who is deep pocketed.
But you have next to zero media exposure and all your games on late night.
The title isn't immediately there. Get yourself into the Eastern Conference where the path is easier.
This one is very simple.
Baron Davis to New Orleans. Chris Paul to the Clippers.
He gets the L.A. spotlight. He gets a roster and a starting five that is ripe to make a run.
Paul could be the person who finally gets this franchise over decades of stink and ruin.
This is the deal that would make the most sense for Paul.
James re-signs in Cleveland and Paul comes to town. The problem is the Cavs have very little to offer the Hornets.
Antawn Jamison is movable but the Hornets don't need a power forward. Mo Williams isn't enough to attract a deal.
The Cavs would likely have to get a third team involved to make a deal to give the Hornets equal value.
It's pie in the sky, but then again, isn't all of this?
Can you imagine Paul and Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol together?
Send Lamar Odom and Sasha Vujacic to New Orleans.
Then again, does New Orleans need either of them? Vujacic is attractive because his contract is up after this year, but it's likely not enough.