The offseason trade which saw Houston Rockets send Chris Paul to Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for Russell Westbrook surprised many people, but apparently, Paul himself was the one who at least expected it. In a recent interview with The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears, Paul admitted that he “was shocked” when he learned he was swapping Houston for OKC.
According to Paul, the biggest reason for the surprise was that he talked with Rockets’ general manager Daryl Morey before the trade, and was told he wasn’t going to Oklahoma.
“I was shocked.” – said Paul. “Truth be told, I just talked to Daryl [Morey] a couple days before the trade and he said he wasn’t going to trade me [to Oklahoma City]. That’s funny because that is going to be the alert that pops up on everybody’s phone because nobody knows that. But what the hell, I just said it.”
Still, despite being caught off guard and send to a non-contender, Chris Paul doesn’t hold grudges towards Houston. He is just happy to play basketball.
“The way my mind is, as long as we’re on the court we have a chance to win. That’s the way I’ve always been. That’s the way I always will be. I’m just grateful to be hooping. … It could be a lot worse.” – he added.
According to the sources around the league, Morey was hoping a third team will join in Rockets and Thunder in a trade, which would help Paul land on a team of his preference. This, however, didn’t materialize and the 34-year-old guard ended up starting the season in OKC’s jersey.
Paul has played 20 games with Thunder this season and is currently averaging 15.1 points, 4.2 rebounds, 6.0 assists, and 1.6 steals.