Are Chris Paul’s days as a Los Angeles Clipper numbered?
According to a source close to the situation, Paul is upset with the Clippers organization for implying that he had something to do with the firing of former head coach Vinny Del Negro. Del Negro was let go by the team after the Clippers lost in the first round of this year’s playoffs. Despite the early playoff exit, Del Negro did lead the Clippers to their most successful regular season, with a franchise record 56 wins. When interviewed by the Los Angeles Times, owner Donald Sterling implied that Paul, who is facing free agency this summer, along with fellow superstar Blake Griffin, were the main reasons why Del Negro was not brought back as head coach. Sterling said “This is a players’ league, and, unfortunately, if you want to win, you have to make the players happy.” Del Negro also intimated that Paul was the reason he wasn’t brought back in an interview with the Dan Patrick Show.
Chris Paul is known around the league for being one of the classiest guys, but a situation like this strongly compromises him, which has led to his frustration with the franchise. Paul vehemently denies having any part of the head coaching situation with the team. Sources close to Paul say that the heat that he is taking could lead him to look elsewhere for a permanent home. The Clippers, however, can still offer Paul the most lucrative contract, one worth $108 million over five years.
Wherever Paul winds up, he is sure to only make that team stronger and an instant contender.