After drafting Blake Griffin as the number one pick overall in the 2009 draft, the Clippers were hoping their fortunes would turn around. In 2013, the Clippers signed Chris Paul to a five-year deal worth around $107 million and it appeared like the franchise was heading in the right direction. A couple of years later, we look back and the Clippers didn't really do much with these two players on their roster. Led by Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, the Clippers never even reached the Western conference finals and many are wondering if it is time to break this duo apart.

Paul and Griffin on their way out?

On Friday night, ESPN reported that both Paul and Griffin informed the Clippers organization that they will not pick up their player options for the 2017/2018 season. In theory, this means that Chris Paul and Blake Griffin will become free agents on July 1st. This wasn't something that was totally unexpected as the pair are still in their prime and are looking for the best possible contracts. It is projected that the Clippers could offer Paul a new, five-year contract worth around $205 million. According to the new labor deal between the league and the NBA player's union, the most any other team can give Paul this summer is a potential four-year contract worth $150 million.

That's a lot of money to turn down, and it is more than likely that "CP3" will stay in Los Angeles.

Blake Griffin on the other hand, will be eligible to sign a five-year contract worth around $175 million with the Clippers this summer thanks to the new collective-bargaining agreement. It is still uncertain whether or not he will resign, but the most any other team in the league can offer Blake this summer is a four-year, $130 million contract.

If money is the decisive factor, then we can expect Griffin and Paul to stay in Clippers uniform next season as well. If they want to compete for the championship, something they haven't been able to do in Los Angeles, then change of scenery is probable for both of them.

The Rockets showing interest in Paul and Griffin

Griffin averaged 21.6 points and 8.1 rebounds per game last season with the Clippers, while Paul averaged 18.1 points and 9.2 assists per game. They (the Clippers) got bounced in the first round of the playoffs by the Utah Jazz, and it seems that Paul-Griffin connection is coming to an end. One of the teams that's interested in signing Paul or Griffin, or even both of them, are the Houston Rockets. ESPN's Marc Stein reported that "the Rockets are expected to go 'hard' after Paul in July." Earlier this season, Rockets general manager Daryl Morey said that the Rockets will continue to improve their roster as they look to compete against the Golden State Warriors next season.

"We are going to keep improving our roster," Morey said. "We have something up our sleeve."

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