Why Chris Paul trade may be biggest mistake in Golden State Warriors’ history

Chris Paul of the Phoenix Suns (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Chris Paul of the Phoenix Suns (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /
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Jordan Poole #3 of the Golden State Warriors handles the ball against Chris Paul #3 of the Phoenix Suns during the second half of the NBA game at Footprint Center on October 25, 2022 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

The chemistry issues will still be incredibly prominent next season

One of the biggest stories for the Golden State Warriors last season was the preseason drama between Draymond Green and Jordan Poole. This event led to a divide in the locker room between the veteran players, coaching staff, and the young players on the roster. This is also what led to the trade that landed Chris Paul in San Francisco.

The issue is, the Warriors may not have removed the issue. This has been a theme with Green for a while now, most notably with Poole, but also with Kevin Durant back in the 2018-19 season. That confrontation also led to the departure of a star.

Green even said himself that just because they are teammates, it doesn’t mean he will like Paul. This could escalate into a real problem for the Warriors. This is clearly a recurring issue that the organization still has yet to properly address. However, it won’t be the only chemistry issue this season.

When asked about his role coming off the bench, Paul refuted the question saying that he and head coach Steve Kerr had not yet held a conversation regarding whether he would start. The problem comes with the fact that the Warriors have the greatest point-guard in NBA history on the roster — how will they start Paul in any lineup without destabilizing what Curry already does for the team?

There is not a single player in the starting five that is definitively less effective than Paul was last season. They were also one of the best lineups in the league last season, why would Kerr disrupt that group?

Everything listed above only considers the swap of Chris Paul and Jordan Poole, not even taking into account the potential of Patrick Baldwin Jr. or Ryan Rollins. The prior was once seen as a top pick in the draft before injuries held him back in his senior year of high school and his freshman year of college. Both prospects looked great for the Wizards in Summer League.

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For a franchise riddled with mistakes — drafting Joe Smith first overall in a draft featuring Kevin Garnett, Antonio McDyess, Rasheed Wallace, and Jerry Stackhouse in the top five, or trading Mitch Richmond for Billy Owens, this may be the worst blunder the Golden State Warriors have ever made.