Ball Don't Lie - NBA

Orlando Magic fans construct a billboard begging their GM to trade for Chris Paul

A group of Orlando Magic fans have put up a billboard encouraging New Orleans Hornets guard Chris Paul(notes) to consider a trade to Orlando, and pushing Magic GM Otis Smith to explore a deal for the MVP-level guard. As if Smith needed the nudge.

Paul is off record, essentially, preferring a trade to either the New York Knicks or the Los Angeles Lakers. Undaunted, his Hornets have forged ahead, listening to all sorts of trade offers from teams on both coasts, mindful of the fact that the Knicks have no trade assets in the wake of the Carmelo Anthony(notes) deal, while eschewing any thoughts of bringing in all-world big man Pau Gasol(notes) in any deal for Paul.

[Wojnarowski: Chris Paul trade talks intensify]

But in a deal with Orlando? Naw, that wouldn't work, unless the Magic wanted to give up Dwight Howard(notes). Still, that hasn't stopped one batch of fandom from trying to presumably push the Magic to make a deal for Paul, as if they actually could give their limited assets save for Howard., which redirects to the Stay Dwight movement we referenced last season, put up the billboard. Clearly unaware of what it would take to bring Chris Paul to Orlando (something other than Jameer Nelson(notes) and some other terrible contracts), but admirable in their pluckiness nevertheless.

The billboard has since been taken down, temporarily; as the Stay Dwight backers remove the Magic logo from Paul's uniform. Until the NBA and its players officially sign off on the new collective bargaining agreement, the Magic can't be seen as arm-in-arm with their own players, much less players signed to contracts with other teams.

[Related: Ten games to watch on the just-released NBA schedule]

Much less teams like the Hornets that are owned by the NBA, teams that would have the NBA's whole resources behind them as they sought a tampering charge.

Still, as nice as a holiday season in Florida might be, it probably wouldn't top a season's worth of Chris Paul-to-Dwight Howard alley-oops. If only the Magic could make that magic happen. It would be a Christmas miracle.

(And the most lopsided trade in NBA history.)

(Photo courtesy David Baumann.)

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