New Orleans Hornets point guard Chris Paul has a laugh...

New Orleans Hornets point guard Chris Paul has a laugh while working with campers at the Copeland's Chris Paul Basketball Camp at Tulane University in New Orleans. (July 27, 2010) Credit: AP

Chris Paul may want out of New Orleans and people close to him may be trying to create a way to get him out, but the NBA Tuesday sent a warning to any team that might consider working backchannels to bird dog the three-time All-Star: Back off.

The league sent a memo that, according to ESPN.com, said "no team should be having communications with Chris Paul or his agent or representative about a potential trade for Paul that have no been authorized in advance by the New Orleans Hornets."

The league threatened harsh penalties against offenders that would include suspensions, prohibition of a potential trade, forfeiture of draft picks and fines up to $5 million, ESPN's report said.

The memo was sent as a means to quell temptation after reports that Paul's new agent, Leon Rose, has talked with teams on Paul's "wish list" to see if a trade could be made. The Hornets new hierarchy on Monday made it clear to him that Paul was not on the trading block. Hornets GM Dell Demps said Paul never made a trade demand in the meeting. Paul has two years left on his contract.

The Knicks are on a short list of preferred teams for Paul, according to multiple reports. Donnie Walsh in May had been in touch with former GM Jeff Bower to see what it would cost to acquire Paul. Bower made it clear the Hornets weren't going to move Pau and Demps has maintained that message. Still, rumors of teams looking to make offers for Paul persist. And it seems Paul started all of the talk.

It was at Carmelo Anthony's wedding in New York on July 10 when Paul said that he wanted Anthony to come with him to New York to join Amar'e Stoudemire so the trio could "form our own Big Three."

The Dolan family owns

controlling interests in the Knicks, MSG and

Cablevision. Cablevision owns Newsday.