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Free agent star point guard Chris Paul reached an agreement with the Phoenix Suns on a mammoth deal to return on a four-year contract worth up to $120 million, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
This new deal will expire when the future Hall of Famer is 40 years old. Since the Suns have Paul's Bird rights, he was eligible for a four-year deal without triggering the league's Over-38 rule.
The agents responsible for negotiating the contract are CAA’s Steve Heumann and Ty Sullivan.
Paul granted Yahoo Sports an exclusive interview on the heels of agreeing to his new deal.
“One thing I’ll never do is take this game for granted,” Paul told Yahoo Sports. “I love to play. It’s a real privilege. I’ve said this time and time again, I don’t care what type of business endeavors I’ll have set up when I’m done playing, it’s going to be so hard and tough whenever I finish playing. Because I love the game, I love the grind, I love the workouts, all of it. This game means a lot to me, and I’m so thankful to be in this position.”
Paul, 36, declined a player option valued at $44.2 million to hit free agency.
Paul, in his first season with the organization, led the Suns to their first NBA Finals appearance in 28 years. They lost in six games to the Milwaukee Bucks. He averaged 16.4 points, 8.9 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game, earning a second-team All-NBA nod and his 11th All-Star appearance.
In the postseason, his scoring average ticked up to 19.2 ppg and included a 41-point performance in closing out the Los Angeles Clippers in the Western Conference finals to propel him to his first trip to the Finals in his career.
His name was linked to the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers, but Paul realized he was in the midst of something special and elected to run it back.
“After this season in Phoenix and experiencing how amazing the fans were, my chemistry with my teammates, with [Devin Booker] Book, with Monty [Williams], I knew Phoenix was where I wanted to be,” Paul told Yahoo Sports. “It’s time to get back to work.”
The 2021-22 season will be Paul’s 17th year. For a point guard still playing at an All-Star level, it is seldom-charted territory.
“I think the biggest thing for me and my advice is you can’t get bored with the process,” Paul told Yahoo Sports. “It’s crazy to think about all of this. My brother CJ [Paul], my agents, they see everything that goes into my training, the masseuses, the body work. I’m always working out. Getting up at three in the morning, five in the morning to go work out has paid off.”
The Suns will also keep guard Cameron Payne on a three-year, $19 million deal, league sources said.
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