Conference-worst team, not playoff contender, could have trade interest in Golden State Warriors' guard

Golden State Warriors v Phoenix Suns
Golden State Warriors v Phoenix Suns / Christian Petersen/GettyImages

Chris Paul has been a fine addition to the Golden State Warriors this season, but the franchise's disappointing 12-14 record means the 38-year-old point-guard is no certainty to be on the team beyond February's trade deadline.

The 12-time All-Star has a non-guaranteed $30 million contract for next season, meaning he can be an expiring contract for a team looking to get off long-term money. Regardless, any Paul trade is likely to be for an upgrade to the Warrior roster, or at least for a player in a greater position of need e.g. the frontcourt.

Could the worst team in the Western Conference appeal as a trade destination for Golden State Warriors' point-guard Chris Paul?

If the Warriors are to put Paul on the market themselves before February 8, there's the potential that a contending or mid-tier team could still hold interest in the 19-year veteran. Yet what if another team, the worst team in the West, actually came calling?

Despite the excitement surrounding number one overall pick Victor Wembanyama, the San Antonio Spurs have sunk to a paltry 4-21 record. That's not quite as bad as the 24-straight losses for the Detroit Pistons, but the Spurs still languish last in the West.

Playmaking and ball-handling has been a huge question mark for San Antonio this season, with legendary coach Gregg Popovich running the experiment of Jeremy Sochan as his primary point-guard. It's led many to believe the franchise is hindering the development of Wembanyama, leading to the suggestion that they should have interest in one of the best point-guard's to ever take to an NBA floor.

Victor Wembanyama, Chris Paul
Chris Paul and Victor Wembanyama go head-to-head during a game between the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages

In a recent article for Sports Illustrated's Inside The Spurs, writer Matt Guzman outlined the Spurs potential interest in Paul as the struggles of both teams continue heading towards the trade deadline.

""The idea of pairing Paul with new Spurs frontman Victor Wembanyama was one tossed around prior to the season. It was almost a dream scenario," Guzman wrote. "A 7-4 power forward who towers over defenders and constantly calls for lobs at the rim combined with a point guard so good at facilitating that he's earned a religious moniker — Point God — does seem to be a match made in heaven.""

Guzman suggested the Spurs give up Zach Collins, Doug McDermott and Devonte Graham for Paul and Cory Joseph, with some picks flipped around as well. That sounds fine for San Antonio, but the issue is that Golden State don't need more depth pieces -- they've got quite the crowded rotation as it is, they just don't have enough talent at the top of the roster.

That would ultimately make this deal unlikely -- although the value may be about right, the Warriors would be better just retaining Paul were this their best return. Perhaps the only chance for a Paul-to-San Antonio trade would be if Golden State's season were to continue to go into freefall to the point where they wanted to shed some salary for tax purposes, or if the Spurs were willing to include talented scorer Keldon Johnson as has been previously suggested.