After the league... err, ownership... err, whatever David Stern is claiming to be with regard to the New Orleans Hornets right now vetoed a trade that would have sent superstar point guard to the Los Angeles Lakers, a trade has been consummated.
Finally, Paul is headed to LA.
But to the Clippers?
The Clippers will reportedly send guard Eric Gordon, center Chris Kaman, forward Al-Farouq Aminu and Minnesota's unprotected 2012 first-round pick to the Hornets for Paul and two future second round picks.
Looking at this deal, and the implications on the Clippers, is intriguing. By trading away Kaman, the Clippers are limiting their big man depth to Blake Griffin and what's left of the free agent market. By trading away Eric Gordon in the wake of claiming Chauncey Billups off waivers, it appears the Clippers will employ a two-point guard look that was effective for the champion Dallas Mavericks at times in the spring.
But there are still serious questions about the depth of LA's second team. Can Caron Butler play more than 65 games? Is DeAndre Jordan ready to be a starting center? And what happens when one of the starting five misses a game?
What this deal does mean, however, is that the Lakers aren't the only power broker in LA now. The Lakers still have Kobe Bryant, but they're still waiting for Andrew Bynum to be anything and Pau Gasol to play defense.
For the Hornets, the future is brighter now than it was a week ago, even with the loss of Paul the headline. Gordon is a legit scorer who will join a roster that lacks another player to take the ball out of his hands. With the addition of the miserable Timberwolves' first round pick to their own pick, the conservative expectation is that New Orleans will have two top ten picks in what will be a good, deep 2012 NBA Draft.