I'm not one to become too infatuated with sudden sports transactions and believing change will occur at the drop of a hat.
Yet, the Chris Paul-to-Los Angeles Clippers deal has me thinking otherwise for some reason.
Maybe it's because Paul is a top-tier point guard who can spread the floor and take over games with his skill level.
Maybe it's because Paul will be dishing dimes to one of the league's more exciting players, Blake Griffin, and it may develop into a good one-two punch on a team that has waited for a good solid tandem for decades.
Maybe it's because the Clippers have suddenly gained a new world of relevance in a sports landscape that used to swallow them whole. The Lakers and Dodgers were always the talk of the town, and even some college programs (like UCLA basketball) have been more consistent than the lowly Clippers over the years.
Maybe it's because Kobe Bryant isn't getting any younger. Pau Gasol and Derek Fisher aren't too young, either. Bryant is still a dominant player on a very good team, but how long can he play at the rate in which he plays?
Maybe it's because the Lakers are helping the cause. The Purple and Gold just traded away Lamar Odom, a key cog on the Lakers' back-to-back title teams, for a draft pick.
Or maybe it's because the Lakers were the team that wanted Paul to begin with, and it was seemingly a done deal until David Stern shot it down. Maybe down the line people will wonder, What if the Lakers were the team that ended up with Paul and not the Clippers?
With big-time players looking to go to a new team just about every week in today's NBA, it's move like the one the Clippers just made that need to be done in order to be competitive. If you look at the players that went deep into the playoffs last season -- players like Bryant and Dirk Nowitzki and Derrick Rose and LeBron James, Dwayne Wade, Kevin Durant -- they are the best players in the league.
Great players can guide teams to places less traveled, and the Clippers made a move that resonates throughout not only their organization but the entire city of Los Angeles. The buzz is heightened and a Lakers-Clippers game will now be a huge draw for consumers of the sport, especially in La La Land.
Maybe that is what Stern wanted all along, a lowly team to end up with a big prize. The deal already made a big splash and there will be plenty more made as the season wears on.
I just wonder how Kobe feels about it all.
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