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Criticism Of NBA Squashing Paul Trade Pouring In

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NEW YORK (AP) – Criticism of the NBA’s squashing of a potential Chris Paul trade is pouring in from around the league.

The New Orleans Hornets, owned by the league, had agreed to a three-team trade Thursday that would have sent their All-Star point guard to the Los Angeles Lakers. But the league killed the deal, denying the decision came about because of pressure on Commissioner David Stern from angry owners.

But Mavericks owner Mark Cuban told a radio station the league went through the lockout to prevent this very type of deal in which small-market teams lose their superstars. Hall of Famer Magic Johnson wrote on Twitter on Friday that it was the “wrong decision” by Stern and the owners.

Stern responded in a statement, saying the Hornets were “better served with Chris in a Hornets uniform than by the outcome of the terms of that trade.”

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)