It’s officially the NBA offseason.
Chris Paul is now a Warrior and Jordan Poole is a Wizard.
Seemingly out of nowhere, Golden State and Washington linked up to swap guards as the former tries to keep its championship window open and the latter goes into rebuilding mode.
Paul adds a fourth future Hall of Famer to the Warriors’ roster (if Draymond Green returns), but is it enough to move the needle for their championship odds?
Bookmakers don’t think it does all that much.
Golden State’s odds to win the 2023-24 NBA title at BetMGM moved to +1200 after the trade, barely up from +1300 before they acquired Paul.
On paper, the Warriors added more star power, but there might be just too many questions about the move to shift the oddsmakers’ forecast.
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First of all, there is still a chance Green bolts from San Francisco.
Green opted out of $27.6 million to become a free agent this week, though the Warriors still hold his Bird Rights and the ability to re-sign him if he wants to remain in blue and gold.
With Poole out the door, that may have become an even more realistic outcome, but nothing is set in stone.
There is also an argument that Paul just doesn’t fit with the Warriors.
Paul will presumably fill Poole’s slot in the rotation — potentially as a starter or sixth man.
But he’s a much different player than the now-Wizard.
Paul, a traditional point guard, is used to having the ball in his hands and running the offense.
The Warriors’ free-flowing attack may not be suitable for him.
He also doesn’t solve their backcourt defensive problems, which gave the Warriors fits at times over the last two seasons when Curry and Poole were on the court together.
Injuries have also, of course, plagued Paul during nearly every playoff run of his career.
And now joins a roster that is, without a doubt, aging.
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But if Paul buys in and stays healthy, he will help Golden State’s chances at a fifth championship during the Curry era — and provide much more than what they got out of Poole last season.
There is still plenty of offseason left, but the Celtics (+475), Nuggets (+500), Suns (+550) and Bucks (+600) all remain well above the Warriors on BetMGM’s oddsboard.
With the fifth-best odds as of this writing, Golden State still has excellent odds to win it all again.
But it will take more than the addition of Paul to open the season as a favorite.