NBA Trade Rumors: 5 Players New Orleans Hornets Should Trade Chris Paul For

Adam FriedgoodContributor IIIDecember 14, 2011

NBA Trade Rumors: 5 Players New Orleans Hornets Should Trade Chris Paul For

0 of 5

    As the Chris Paul saga continues, it has become evident that David Stern has a formula for what this Chris Paul trade will eventually look like and won’t accept anything less.

    If the trade for Paul doesn’t involve draft picks, young stars and salary-cap relief for the Hornets, Stern isn’t interested. 

    Even an agreed-upon deal that would have given the Hornets a consistent 20-point scorer, a great post scorer and rebounder, the reigning Sixth Man of the Year, a solid, young backup PG and a first-round pick wasn’t acceptable for Stern.

    There are very few players in the league that teams would be willing to trade for Paul that fit Stern’s formula.  Here’s a list of five players I feel the Hornets should look to build a trade around if they want to get a quality package in return for Chris Paul. 

Eric Gordon

1 of 5

    The most recent rumors surrounding Chris Paul have been about him going to the Clippers

    It was first rumored that the Clippers weren’t willing to part ways with their young stud, Eric Gordon, in a trade for Paul, but now it appears they may be. 

    The former Hoosier is an extremely dynamic scorer, who put up a career-high 22.3 points per game last season.  The crazy thing is Gordon only played one year of college basketball, so he is still only 22 years old. 

    Gordon is still coming into his own and once he hits his prime, he could be competing for scoring titles with Kevin Durant and LeBron James.  The Hornets would be replacing their current superstar with a future superstar if they can convince the Clippers to trade them EG.  

Stephen Curry

2 of 5

    Curry is a rising star in the league and has proved all his critics coming out of college who said he could only shoot the ball seriously wrong.  In his two seasons, Curry has had almost identical stats, scoring 18 points while dishing out six assists and getting just under two steals per game.

    If the Hornets could receive Curry back in a trade for Paul, they would be getting a player they could easily build a team around.  Curry is only 23 years old and is still playing on his rookie contract.

    The Warriors also have young stars to package with Curry that the Hornets would definitely be interested in.  If the Warriors offered a deal like Curry, Ekpe Udoh and Klay Thompson, the Hornets would need to strongly consider accepting it because I don't think they'll receive a better offer than that from any team.

Rajon Rondo

3 of 5

    The most bizarre rumor of the summer has to be that Danny Ainge is trying to get Rondo out of Boston.  Since entering the league in 2006, Rondo has been nothing short of amazing for the Celtics, so it makes no sense why they would want to trade him.

    The best characteristic about Rondo so far in his career is that his play has elevated come playoff time.  During the regular season, Rondo averages 10.7 points, 7.6 assists and 4.4 rebounds for his career.  In the playoffs, however, he is scoring closer to 14 points, dishing out 8.5 assists and grabbing 5.4 rebounds per game. 

    While Rondo isn’t the scorer Paul is, he is just as good, if not better than Paul at most other PG responsibilities, like ball-handling and passing.  Rondo also brings a toughness that most other players in the league can’t match.  He plays with a chip on his shoulder, which will only grow and help motivate him to succeed even more if he gets traded to the Hornets.

Andrew Bynum

4 of 5

    This is the only big man on the list.  While I feel it would be a much quicker road back to the playoffs for the Hornets if they could replace Paul with another star PG, Bynum would be too good to pass up on if they could acquire him from the Lakers.

    I know Bynum has had trouble staying healthy his whole career so far, but when he is on the court, Bynum is a force on both ends of the floor.  He’s a legitimate seven-footer, who uses his freakishly long arms to block shots, deflect passes and grab rebounds. 

    Bynum also has a very solid low-post game and I feel he would be scoring closer to 20 points per game if he weren’t on a team with another great seven-footer.  Since he isn’t a PG though, the Lakers will most likely need to get a third team involved in any trade offer for Paul so the Hornets can get a suitable PG to replace Paul.

Russell Westbrook

5 of 5

    This would be an ideal trade for both teams. 

    The Thunder would want Paul because he is a much better distributor than Westbrook and would complement Durant perfectly.  The Hornets would want Westbrook because he is a dominant scorer who can take over games by himself.

    Westbrook is also a tenacious defender, who uses his strength to lock up either guard position. 

    At only 23 years old, Westbrook is still coming into his own as a PG, especially since he played SG in college.  He earned All-NBA Second Team honors last season and I believe his game would drastically improve if he was the lone star on the Hornets as apposed to a complementary piece like he is currently with the Thunder.