Paul George agrees to deal with Thunder

Kristopher Nichols
July 1, 2018

The best player in the game declined his $35.6m player option with Cleveland, setting up the possibility that he signs with the Lakers.

George previously stated that he has a desire to move back to his hometown of L.A. but that view may have softened after spending a year in Oklahoma City.

So as expected, George has informed the Thunder he is opting out of the past year of his contract, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. However, his year with the Thunder may have been enough to convince him that he can find more success for now with Westbrook in OKC.

At the moment, it seems as though LeBron James is heavily considering signing with the Los Angeles Lakers when he becomes a free agent on July 1.

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The 6-foot-9 forward posted 21.9 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 2.0 steals per game last season, playing alongside Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony. I've had the same guy (Frank) cutting mine for the past two years and the most I've divulged is "work has been insane..." but hey - maybe PG is just a nicer, more open guy than I am.

George's sister, Teiosha George, said the Thunder "really wowed us" when Paul arrived in Oklahoma City. Along with PG, the Lakers are also focused on landing LeBron James, in addition to a possible trade with San Antonio to acquire Kawhi Leonard. That could play into the patient strategy Johnson is professing, but the Lakers may have to push their chips to the center of the table much sooner than they might prefer, if they want to make James's Friday decision that much easier. In a way, it's like, I want to come here, I want to play for the home team and put a Laker jersey on.

Westbrook recently hosted a "summer hype house party" in Oklahoma City, which led to suspicion that his 28-year-old running mate would sign with the team. On the other hand, if James remains with Cleveland, George should re-sign with the Thunder and try to compete with Westbrook.

"Here they have made a huge risk in trading for me, knowing I have one year on my deal", George said in part one of SportsCenter's behind-the-scenes look at his free agency.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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