Warriors' controversial trade an undoubted success despite current standing

Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers
Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages

When the Golden State Warriors traded for Chris Paul in the offseason, speculation was heavy on how the former rival would fit into the franchise's system as a backup point-guard for the first time in his storied career.

Not only was Paul's fit as a Warrior questionable, but the franchise had given up a championship-winner in Jordan Poole who many still believed held All-Star level potential. The financial aspect of the deal was prominent, yet this was a trade Golden State -- looking to return to championship contention -- made in order to get better.

The Golden State Warriors' acquisition of Chris Paul has been an undoubted success despite their tenth-placed standing at present

While the Warriors are far from championship contention right now, their battle to simply make the playoffs shouldn't cloud the fact that the move for Paul has been an unquestioned positive. Aside from missing a significant period with a fractured hand, the 38-year-old has been a reliable and productive piece for Golden State.

Head coach Steve Kerr believes this season's team is better than that of last -- Paul is a huge reason for that given the safety net and consistency he's provided, particularly in comparison to the often turbulent play of Poole.

Speaking to 95.7 The Game's Willard and Dibs on Wednesday, Kerr stated "I've never been more comfortable with the non-Steph (Curry) minutes than I am this year because of Chris."

Paul's impact has been profound over Golden State's recent surge, with the 12-time All-Star standing in for a resting Curry to record 12 points, nine assists and four steals against the Utah Jazz, before recording 11 points, six rebounds and nine assists in Tuesday's pivotal win over the Los Angeles Lakers.

After some underwhelming shooting to start the season, Paul is now at a healthy 37.9% from beyond the arc, while he remains fourth on the team in plus-minus. Poole, on the other hand, has been one of the least efficient scorers in the league and holds the third-worst total plus-minus of any player this season.

If the Warriors fail to make the playoffs, history may point to Paul's acquisition as a pointless transaction. That couldn't be further from the case though, regardless of what happens to the franchise over the next week.