We could be in-store for a very entertaining Thursday in the NBA, and that goes just beyond games starting up again following the All-Star break.
All 30 NBA teams have until 3 p.m. eastern standard time tomorrow to complete any and all trades this season, and we’ve already seen several moves made ahead of the deadline, with the Lou Williams trade being one of the most recent ones.
Now, per Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical, we could see another big named player in-addition to DeMarcus Cousins moved ahead of the deadline. Wojnarwoski states in his report that the Indiana Pacers are assessing the trade market for star forward Paul George.
A trade of George would signal the start of a rebuild in Indiana, with team president Larry Bird making Myles Turner the Pacers’ centerpiece. Keeping George would mean that the Pacers will want to improve the team around George, and that seems like the most likely option.
Many around the NBA believed that the Pacers had one of the best off-seasons over the summer of any team in the league by trading for Jeff Teague and Thaddeus Young while also signing Al Jefferson and Aaron Brooks. While they currently have the 6th seed in the Eastern Conference, they are just one game above .50o. While any team trading for George would certainly benefit in a huge way this season, teams are also weary of George’s contract.
George will become an unrestricted free agent following the conclusion of next season, and Wojnarowski reported in the same piece that George has considered signing with the Los Angeles Lakers in the summer of 2018, while also weighing the option of re-signing with the Indiana Pacers.
The Lakers are aspect to be among the teams interested in acquiring George via trade, while the Boston Celtics could also make a big push for George depending on how far their trade talks with the Chicago Bulls regarding Jimmy Butler go. The New Orleans Pelicans had also expressed interest in George before they traded for Cousins.
After winning the NBA’s Most Improved Player Award in 2012-2013, George has taken an incredible route to stardom in the NBA, even after a gruesome leg injury. He is still just 26-years-old, and is averaging 22.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 3.3 assists per game this season.
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