Report: Chris Paul Threatened to Leave L.A. for Houston if Clippers Didn’t Land Doc Rivers

Chris PaulDwight Howard bolted the Los Angeles Lakers for the Houston Rockets, and the perception continues to be that Howard left because he didn’t like head coach Mike D’Antoni‘s system. Well, apparently Howard wasn’t the only L.A. basketball player to desire to leave if he didn’t get his coach — only this one got his way.

Chris Paul threatened the Clippers that he would leave the team and sign with the Rockets to team up with Dwight Howard if L.A. didn’t acquire head coach Doc Rivers, according to Grantland’s Bill Simmons. Paul is said to have made his point after the first round of talks between the Clippers and Boston Celtics fell through.

“To Chris Paul, who basically told the Clippers that after they squashed the first incarnation of their Doc Rivers trade,” Simmons wrote. “Chris didn’t like that. He let them know he was heading to Houston to team up with Dwight. And he wasn’t kidding.”

So, this is the state of the NBA: marquee players are spurning the Lakers, while the Clippers are acquiescing to their star players rather than alienating them.