The Lakers’ goal of signing two superstar free agents this summer is well-known across the NBA. The key to attaining that goal has always been Paul George, the Los Angeles native who has given clear indications that he would like to play for the Lakers.
The Lakers were unable to come to an agreement on a trade for the superstar when he was a member of the Indiana Pacers, paving the way for a move to the Thunder for this season. George is still an upcoming free agent and has not shied away from claiming that he will take time to make a decision this summer and that the Lakers are on his short list of choices.
Nevertheless, as good as the team’s chances may seem, it’s not at all a certainty that George would leave a playoff team to come to LA.
In fact, George may now be leaning the other way, as he spoke to reporters about his teammate Russell Westbrook coming to his defense after he was snubbed from the All-Star team:
Paul George had some pretty interesting things to say to @Rachel__Nichols today about Russell Westbrook's reaction to his All-Star snub: https://t.co/ZGv1LuoRC4 pic.twitter.com/nEIKMQhBIR
— Royce Young (@royceyoung) January 25, 2018
It’s important to note that throughout his career, George has seemed like an impressionable person and someone who often says things that people want to hear. Depending on your views of glasses of water, that could be a positive or negative sign for the Lakers whose hopes hang on George’s reported and public interest in playing in his hometown.
The Thunder struggled out of the gate to fit George, Westbrook, and Carmelo Anthony together but are starting to click, having attained a 16-0 record since December when all five starters are healthy and playing.
As the Thunder improve and George’s relationship with Westbrook strengthens, the odds of the Lakers being able to swoon him decrease. But things change in a matter of moments in the NBA and one playoff disappointment or strong pitch could be enough to lure George back to Los Angeles.