Paul Continues To Follow WFU Hoops

Just four years ago, Chris Paul led Wake Forest's basketball team to a 27-6 record and an NCAA tournament berth as he averaged 15.3 points and 6.6 assists per game. Now, the talented point guard is a perennial NBA All-Star – but he still manages to follow Wake Forest basketball extensively.

In Chris Paul's four years in the NBA, he has been nothing short of stellar. In 281 career games, Paul averages 18.9 points, 9.8 assists, and 4.7 rebounds per game for the New Orleans Hornets. Paul, nicknamed CP3, is considered by most basketball followers as the #1 point guard in the NBA.

Since being picked #4 overall in the 2005 NBA draft, he has been named rookie of the year, an NBA All-Star, named a member of the NBA All-Defensive team, and has been a part of a gold medal winning Olympic basketball team.

Still, although Paul has been to the playoffs with the New Orleans Hornets, he has yet to accomplish his #1 goal. "[I want to] win in a championship," Paul told DeaconSports this week. "That's about the only thing I haven't done yet that I really want to do. That's my plan this year, to get to the finals and win it."

According to Paul, it is up to him to help lead New Orleans to a title. "I just want to be a leader," he said. "Me and David West, we are the two all-stars. We have to bring it every night, that's our job."

While Paul continues to focus his efforts on winning an NBA championship, he also continues to follow Wake Forest basketball, catching almost every game on TV. "I see pretty much every game," said Paul, who watched Wake Forest beat Clemson 96-88 on Sunday as he arrived in Atlanta.

"They're really talented," Paul said of the Demon Deacons. "Their size -- those guys have a lot going for them. I like their defensive gameplan that coach has set up. They're forcing teams to beat them with jump shots."

Paul keeps in touch with the Wake Forest coaching staff as well as with a few players. "I used to [talk to all the players,] but they all change their numbers," Paul joked. "Really, I talked to Harvey Hale not too long ago and I talk to Ish [Smith] every now and then. And of course I talk to the coaches all the time and I watch every game."

From that, Paul has had extensive opportunities to see some of the Demon Deacons' talented underclassmen including James Johnson, Jeff Teague, and Al-Farouq Aminu. "They can be NBA ready," Paul said when asked what he thought of their games. "I love Teague's game, I love Jeff Teague. [He's] my favorite player on the team. Al-Farouq is real talented and the same thing with James. They just have to keep working and not get caught up in the NBA."

Although Paul has games on both Friday and Saturday, his brother and business manager, C.J. Paul will attend the entire ACC Tournament. Although the Hornets have a game on Monday in New Orleans, Paul does plan to attend Sunday's game if the Demon Deacons make the ACC Tournament finals in Atlanta.


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