Grantland’s Bill Simmons published
Part 1 of his expectedly massive offseason recap yesterday and there’s an interesting bit about Doc Rivers’ move from Boston to L.A.According to Simmons, free agent point guard Chris Paul threatened to ditch the Clippers and join forces with Dwight Howard in Houston if owner Donald Sterling didn’t reignite talks to acquire the coach.
Recall the storyline of the Rivers trade: talks were hot and heavy, followed by rapid cooling to the exchange on both sides with new demands hitting the table, loud proclamations of the deal “dying” followed a couple days later by resurrection and significantly quieter completion.
It sounds like Paul’s ultimatum led to that resurrection. According to Simmons, Paul stood firm for 36 hours before Sterling called Boston back to get the deal completed.
The Rockets would have had to perform roster alchemy to bring in Paul and Howard, but as we have seen in Miami, restructuring a roster built around superstars on the fly is not impossible.
The lesson of the story is stars run the NBA. Hoopsworld’s Steve Kyler has reported that the Knicks have told Carmelo Anthony he will be able to pick his teammates in 2015 similar to how Dwyane Wade picked his partners in 2010.
Plain and simple, you need superstars to win in the NBA, and to keep those superstars you need to let them have their way.
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