Mitch Kupchak still hasn’t forgiven David Stern for vetoing the Lakers’ 2011 trade for Chris Paul.
At the time, it appeared that the Lakers had snagged the All-Star guard until Stern stepped in and stopped the purple and gold from pulling off yet another blockbuster deal.
According to Eric Pincus of the L.A. Times, Kupchak still holds a grudge against the commissioner due to his controversial decision:[pullquote]Kupchak also gave credit to Commissioner David Stern, who is retiring in February, for globalizing the NBA game.
“He’s done so much for this [league with] his vision,” Kupchak said. “. . . We’ll miss him, with the exception of one moment.”
In 2011, Kupchak had agreed to a trade with the New Orleans Hornets (now Pelicans) and Houston Rockets to bring Chris Paul to the Lakers — but Stern stepped in as temporary owner of the Hornets to stop the blockbuster deal.
“Have you forgiven him for that one moment?” asked Lakers broadcaster Stu Lantz, moderating the event.
“No I haven’t,” Kupchak answered.[/pullquote]
Kupchak has every right to still be mad about the decision; if the Lakers had been successful in acquiring the now six-time All-Star, there’s a good chance that the team’s current struggles wouldn’t be present.
While the decision is now in the past and the Lakers need to move on, fans will likely have trouble forgetting the events of December 2011 until they once again find themselves with a contending team.