Just because Chris Paul has committed to returning to Los Angeles doesn't mean the Clippers are done wheeling and dealing. Even though Chauncey Billups may not return next The list of suitors lining up for Eric Bledsoe is growing. According to ESPN's Marc Stein, the Raptors have pitched a hybrid of trade scenarios which would exchange Andrea Bargnani and/or DeMar DeRozan for either Caron Butler, DeAndre Jordan and/or Bledsoe. The talks are still in their exploratory stages, but would provide the Clippers with a premium stretch-4 and shooting guard. On the other hand, neither are known as very good defenders.
Bledsoe has abundant talent and is just tapping into his latent potential, however, Jamal Crawford's presence has made him the odd man out in the Clippers lineup.
Bledsoe and Jordan were the two primary players pursued by Boston during the Clippers' drawn-out attempts to hire Rivers away from the Celtics. Although sources say the Clippers actually prefer Bargnani to DeRozan because of the Italian forward's ability to step out and stretch the floor, one source close to the process expressed doubt that L.A. would be willing to surrender Bledsoe in a deal for a player Toronto has been trying to move for months, given the considerable interest around the league in Chris Paul's athletic backup.
So one possible outcome to the Clippers-Raptors talks, sources said, is a smaller trade headlined by Bargnani going to L.A. in exchange for Caron Butler, enabling the Clippers to save Bledsoe for a bigger trade — or, perhaps, keeping him if Rivers holds firm.