A #Chris Paul trade is taking place, with the Los Angeles Clippers sending him to the #Houston Rockets for a package of players. The shocking news was just revealed on Wednesday morning (June 28), ending speculation about whether or not Paul would re-sign with the Clippers during the NBA offseason. There had been a number of rumors about Chris Paul and Blake Griffin becoming free agents, but instead, a trade has been worked out with the Houston Rockets.

The reason for this deal was that Paul hinted he was interested in simply signing with Houston.

In exchange for their best player, the Los Angeles Clippers will receive Patrick Beverley, Sam Dekker, Lou Williams, and a 2018 first-round pick from the Houston Rockets. It's not an amazing package of players or picks, but it is what the team could convince the Rockets to give up on short notice. It also allows the Rockets to skirt the salary cap and give up players that wouldn't fit with James Harden and Chris Paul next season.

Are the Houston Rockets true contenders now?

The battle in the Western Conference will still have the Golden State Warriors as the favorites to make the NBA Finals again, but the Houston Rockets just made a huge step forward. Putting Chris Paul on the same court as James Harden will make the offense even better for the Rockets. It will likely put more people in the seats as well, helping the team absorb some of the cost of this new max contract.

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The way this all works, with Chris Paul to the Rockets, is that he has agreed to opt into his current contract. He will now make roughly $24.3 million for the 2017-18 NBA season, with the chance to enter free agency the following season. Once he is a member of the Houston Rockets, Paul can then agree to a contract extension, most likely at the maximum salary level. For now, though, he is going to Houston on basically a one-year deal.

San Antonio Spurs fans will be disappointed with this news

There had been a number of NBA rumors about Chris Paul signing with the San Antonio Spurs during free agency. The team wanted to push hard to add an All-Star point guard to a core that already includes Kawhi Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge. This Paul-to-Rockets deal will make that endeavor impossible, but there are other options on the trade market and in free agency that the Spurs will now be able to explore.

For the Houston Rockets, the team was able to acquire one of the best point guards in the league without giving up a significant asset. Having Chris Paul as the starting point guard will immediately make the team better and give them a great chance to make it deep into the 2018 NBA Playoffs. For the Los Angeles Clippers, though, this signals the beginning of another long rebuilding process.

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