UPDATE: According to Mark Medina of the L.A. Daily News, the Lakers seem more interested in waiting for George in free agency.
Ah, the NBA trade deadline, when agents and anonymous sources push agendas from a multitude of angles and fans are left to sift through thousands of words to try to find some semblance of truth.
Just hours earlier, Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Indiana Pacers were discussing trading their superstar, Paul George, out of fear he might depart for the Los Angeles Lakers in 2018 as a free agent. It’s a fun rumor, but one can’t help but be dubious because just a day earlier, the word was they would not consider such a trade.
At the time of yesterday’s reports, word was Larry Bird was trying to find talent to improve George’s chances at winning a title. That apparently hasn’t changed, but with reason for a little more urgency, according to Sam Amick of USA Today.
Here’s how he put it, with a pretty major change from the Lakers’ side of negotiations.
George will be a free agent in the summer of 2018, and it’s no secret that the 26-year-old Palmdale, Calif. native would love nothing more than to sign with his hometown Lakers if the future is bleak in Indiana. The fact that the Lakers are in the process of trying to land George right now, with new lead executive Magic Johnson moving fast to fill that superstar hole that Kobe Bryant left behind, only makes these next two days all the more compelling.
Read that again. The phrase “Lakers are in the process of trying to land George right now” jumps off the screen, right?
And yet, here’s something to pump the breaks from the Lakers’ side. Unless they needed an extra first-rounder to send to Indiana (altogether likely, by the way), why send Lou Williams to Houston in a move to focus on the youth movement? Just food for thought.
So, could a trade of Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance, Jr., Brandon Ingram and Jose Calderon in exchange for George and Monta Ellis work? We’ll see. But where there’s smoke there’s fire, and this story has produced quite a bit of smoke thus far on trade deadline Wednesday.