Lakers' trade for Chris Paul is killed by NBA [update]
The Lakers' deal for New Orleans guard Chris Paul has been killed by the NBA, which owns the Hornets franchise.
"It is not true that owners killed the deal," said NBA spokesman Tim Frank. "It wasn't even discussed at the Board [of Governors] meeting. The league office declined to make the trade for basketball reasons."
The league bought the New Orleans franchise last December and has typically left personnel decisions to the Hornets' front office.
Nobody seemed more surprised by the death of the deal than Paul.
"WoW," he wrote on Twitter at 6:11 p.m.
Lakers officials were still hunkered down in a room at the team's El Segundo headquarters Thursday night, trying to ascertain what would happen next.
The Lakers had agreed to acquire Paul from New Orleans for power forwards Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom in a three-team deal also involving Houston, a move that symbolized a shift from finesse, precision and depth in the Lakers' frontcourt to speed and athleticism in their backcourt.
Photo: Hornets point guard Chris Paul pulls down a rebound from Lakers point guard Steve Blake during a playoff game last season. Credit: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times