HomeSportsCP3 grateful for 'unique' Warriors experience he could never have imagined

CP3 grateful for ‘unique’ Warriors experience he could never have imagined

CP3 grateful for ‘unique’ Warriors experience he never imagined originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO – The question marks surrounding Warriors general manager Mike Dunleavy Jr.’s stunning move. to trade Jordan Poole for Chris Paul fourteen months ago could have covered the entire Bay Area and beyond.

How would the 38-year-old point guard fit in with the Warriors? Would he really start in the same backcourt as Steph Curry and Klay Thompson? Would Paul be a boost or a burden to the locker room?

Paul started the season in coach Steve Kerr’s starting lineup due to an injury to Draymond Green. He then came off the bench for the first time since his sophomore year at Wake Forest in his third game as a Warrior. The result was an 11-point Warriors victory against the Houston Rockets, where Paul was a game-high plus-22 in 27 minutes.

Year 19 won’t be Paul’s last. The future Hall of Famer known as the “Point God” made that clear Tuesday night after the Warriors’ season-ending 118-94 NBA Play-In Tournament loss to the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center, and reiterated his wish Wednesday in Chase Center. . In what role and with what team is his next unknown.

“I think for me I’ve shown the ability to adapt and change,” Paul said. “But first and foremost, I am a competitor. I want to hoop and I just love to play. I like playing; I like to contribute. I think it’s a big summer.

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“I have to get back to work.”

None of Paul’s $30 million contracts for next season are guaranteed. The Warriors are entering another offseason in the depths of salary cap hell, and the only way for them to find a player who can take them out of the play-in and be a contender again is through salary to dump Paul. The assumption when the Warriors acquired him was that this would likely be a one-year marriage, regardless of whether Golden State won a ring or was sent home early for the second straight season.

If Kerr has his way, Paul will wear a Warriors jersey again – or at least that’s what he told the media on Tuesday night in Sacramento.

“Chris was fantastic, not only on the field, but as a leader,” Kerr said. “It was a difficult situation for him that he handled beautifully. He has always been the starting point guard for his team. But you look at our team, and we’re quite small. Even though he’s one of our best players, if we want to put our best players in and he’s one of them, you start adding Chris, Steph together. [Curry]Klay [Thompson] – it’s not the ideal selection for him.

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“…The way he handled it this year was unbelievable. So professional, such a great mentor to the younger guys. One of the great pros I’ve ever been around – just his approach, his attitude and his sacrifice. I loved coaching Chris and I really hope we get him back next year.”

Ultimately, that decision is not up to Paul. Dunleavy will be the head of decision-making when it comes to Paul’s future as a Warrior, as will Kerr and majority owner Joe Lacob. The Warriors have shown nothing but respect for Paul since his arrival, and vice versa. Blindsided Paul with their decision doesn’t feel like a reality, even in the cutthroat business of the NBA.

Paul himself said on Wednesday that he is “open to things” when asked about his future as a member of the franchise. After years and years of playing the role of Warriors rival and wearing the hat of the perfect villain, Paul’s first experience as a Warrior was full of ‘good surprises’ despite the team’s disappointing ending, praising people from senior vice president of communications Raymond Ridder to vice president of team operations Eric Housen, the entire training staff and everyone behind the scenes, calling the Warriors a “first-class organization.”

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On the court, Paul led the Warriors in assists per game with 6.8, and his assist-to-turnover ratio of 5.2 was third-best in the NBA, checking the biggest box expected of him. Like David West, Tyson Chandler, Bobby Jackson and others once did before him, Paul was an invaluable guide to turning pro for Warriors youngsters like Brandin Podziemski, Trayce Jackson-Davis, Moses Moody and Jonathan Kuminga.

Off the court, Paul will now be an AAU father to his son and attend his daughter’s volleyball games after missing the NBA playoffs for the first time in 14 years. He continues to be fueled by a love for basketball that started at age 4. He’s more at a fork in the road than at the end of his journey, focusing more on a year he never imagined, rather than soured by grief.

Paul: “It was a unique experience. “I’m glad I got the chance to play with the guys I played with, got the chance to meet new people and play for an organization I never thought I would play for. But I am grateful for the experience.”

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