Chris Paul turns down $44M option, will be free agent
Chris Paul has declined the $44.2 million player option on his contract. Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Paul had a massive player option on his contract for the 2021-22 season, but the star point guard is opting for free agency.

As expected, Paul has declined the $44.2 million player option on his contract, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic. The 11-time All-Star will now become a free agent.

Paul is 36, which is why some people thought he would be better off exercising the option. However, he had an excellent season with the Phoenix Suns and proved he is still capable of playing at a high level. NBA contracts are guaranteed, and it is all but certain that Paul will get a multiyear deal worth more than $44.2 million in total. He will likely end up with a bigger payday by choosing free agency, even if his average annual salary is far less than what he would have made under the player option.

The Suns want to keep Paul, as he was a valuable leader for them and a big reason why they reached the NBA Finals. CP3 averaged 16.4 points and 8.9 assists per game during the regular season. He then scored 19.2 points and had 8.6 assists per game during Phoenix’s deep postseason run.

Paul will likely have numerous offers, though one team seems to keep coming up as having the potential to lure him away from Phoenix.

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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