Chris Paul going to the Golden State Warriors drew mixed reactions, especially with the team not having enough big men. Will the tandem of Paul and Stephen Curry be “undefendable,” just like what many experts think?
Many sports analysts believe it is a good choice to acquire a 38-year-old guard in exchange for a young and future star in Jordan Poole
In an episode of NBA Today, former NBA players-turned-analysts Kendrick Perkins and Richard Jefferson agreed that Paul better fits the GSW’s system than Poole.
“They’re (Steph and Klay) used to playing with a true point guard. Jared Jack can do things, [but] Chris Paul can do it better.
“Poole, that wasn’t him. He was a shooter, he was a scorer, and that’s what he did. I think bringing Chris Paul can really help with that,” said Jefferson, who played with the Warriors in 2013.
JP3 is a scoring machine, no doubt about that. But he is marred with turnovers, which we saw during the playoffs, committing 1.9 turnovers per game.
His shot selection was also poor in the postseason. In Game 1 against the Los Angeles Lakers, he took a very deep three that missed.
So when the newly-appointed GM Mike Dunleavy Jr. sent Poole to the Wizards to get Paul, many agreed it was a good move. One particular reason is that moving him and his $128 million four-year deal would free up much salary to get more players.
What Chris Paul Brings to the Warriors: Ultimate Ball Distribution
Perkins believes that Chris Paul being paired with Warriors superstar Stephen Curry will be “pretty dangerous.”
Well, they will be once they get their chemistry right.
Paul is the ultimate point guard, always considering his teammates before shooting the rock. Having an average of 13.9 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 8.9 assists per game shows how selfless he is.
Last season, the Warriors led the league in most “cath-and-shoot three-pointers with 12.2 per game. Meanwhile, Paul is behind LeBron James in most assists on 3-pointers with 3,489.
If paired with the Warriors, a lethal team when it comes to shooting the deep ball, Paul will be making plays for the likes of Curry and Klay Thompson to get open threes. More open looks mean a better chance of making the shots.
The veteran guard is still considered the ultimate Point God. With the playstyle of the Warriors of keeping the ball moving to find the right chance to score, Paul would surely fit right in.
It is also worth mentioning that Paul has been competing against Curry, Green, and Thompson for a decade. Also, he is already 38 years old and still without a ring.
So when the opportunity to join them opened up, he was more than happy to join a team that gave him the best chance to retire with a title.
“I was excited to get a chance to go play for a franchise like that with the great players they have. It’s crazy how life comes full circle. For the last 10 years, I’ve been competing… against them. I’m all about winning, so whatever’s gonna give me an opportunity to win, I’m all for it,” said Paul during an interview with award-winning sportscaster Lindsay Czarniak for her podcast “Lunch with Lindsay.”
An ‘Undefendable’ Offense, But at What Cost?
When it comes to offense, there is no doubt that the Warriors will be a more lethal team, with Chris Paul making plays. But GSW has an obstacle they need to overcome: handling taller teams.
They have let go of seven-footer James Wiseman to acquire defensive specialist and high flyer Gary Payton II. So the task of defending centers like Joel Embiid, Anthony Davis, Nikola Jokic, and other big men was given to Draymond Green and Kevon Looney.
Green is still an elite defender. However, at 33 years old, we saw a decline in his defensive capabilities.
Also, he was the primary ball handler for the Warriors. With Paul taking point, will Green take a backseat and let the former Phoenix Suns call the plays?
It is worth noting as well that he declined his player option and will become a free agent. Does this mean that if Green leaves, who will be their defensive anchor?
Perkins argued that to overcome the challenge of playing small ball, the Warriors have to “mix it up” with their rotation.
“Well, somebody’s gotta sacrifice. Somebody’s gotta sacrifice, and I think you gonna have to mix it up. Because there’s gonna be times you will gonna see Denver, what, four times?
“You’re gonna see Anthony Davis, four times, Joel Embiid. You’ll gonna see these teams, and you can’t go small. But I think that’s part of the sacrifice. That is why you wanna get rid of a guy—I don’t wanna disrespect Poole and call him selfish—but that’s how his action show.
“You want to bring a guy willing to sacrifice because he knows he wants to win a championship in CP3.”