Chris Paul and Dwight Howard

Will Chris Paul and Dwight Howard play together next season?

According to ESPN.com, the NBA stars have been in consistent contact recently about their desire to play together … “if somebody can make it happen,” sources said.

One team that could make it happen is the Atlanta Hawks, Howard’s hometown — they have the cap room to sign both players to maximum-salaried contracts.¬†However, Howard is not particularly fond of the idea of returning home, but would do so to play alongside CP3, said sources.

Paul, on the other hand, really likes living in Los Angeles.

“It would be very tough for him to go to Atlanta,” the source tells ESPN. “He loved Atlanta when they should have drafted him in ’05 but not so much since then. But hey, everybody is an option at this point.”

The ideal preference of Howard and Paul would be to play together for the Clippers, but the franchise doesn’t have the cap room to sign Howard as a free agent. It would take a sign-and-trade deal with the Lakers to make it happen.

Who could they trade though? Realistically, Blake Griffin would have to be included in a deal to make that happen, but sources say the Clips regard the star forward as “untouchable.”

Stay tuned…