Rockets sign All-Star Paul to bumper new contract

AFP
Nine-time NBA All-Star Chris Paul officially signed a new contract with the Rockets on Sunday,reuniting with NBA Most Valuable Player James Harden to make Houston a title contender
AFP

Nine-time NBA All-Star Chris Paul officially signed a new contract with the Rockets on Sunday, reuniting with NBA Most Valuable Player James Harden to make Houston a title contender.

Paul’s new contract was reportedly a four-year deal for US$160 million.

Paul averaged 18.6 points, 7.9 assists, 5.4 rebounds and 1.66 blocked shots a game last season for the Rockets, who lost to Golden State in seven games in the Western Conference finals.

The Rockets were 50-8 when Paul played during the regular season, and 23-2 when he scored at least 20 points.

Paul, 33, ranked sixth in the National Basketball Association in assists, 11th in steals and second in free-throw percentage with a 91.9 percent accuracy.

In March, Paul recorded his 2,000th career steal to join Jason Kidd, Gary Payton, and John Stockton as the only NBA players with at least 8,000 assists and 2,000 steals in their careers.

Paul ranks ninth in NBA history in assists (8,708) and 12th in steals (2,008), leading all active league players in both categories. He is the only player in NBA history with career averages of at least 18 points, 9 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 steals a game.

Elsewhere, two-time NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant has signed a new contract to remain with the Golden State Warriors, who seek a fourth title in five campaigns next season.

While the team did not disclose details of the new deal, the San Jose Mercury News, New York Times and ESPN reported the deal would pay Durant about US$30 million next season and a player option for the 2019-20 season at around US$31 million.

The Warriors made a deal with free-agent center DeMarcus Cousins that will make them the first team in 40 years to boast an all-All-Star starting lineup alongside Durant, forward Draymond Green and guards Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.

After winning the 2015 NBA crown but losing to Cleveland in a 2016 finals rematch, the Warriors landed Durant and have beaten the Cavaliers in the past two finals, going 8-1.

Durant, 29, averaged 28.8 points, 10.8 rebounds, 7.5 assists and 2.0 blocked shots as the Warriors swept Cleveland to capture the title last month in his 11th career NBA season.


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