Paul George missed out on all three All-NBA teams when they were announced Thursday, meaning he’s no longer eligible for a five-year, approximately $207 million designated player extension with the Indiana Pacers.
According to Nate Taylor of the Indianapolis Star, George will now “consider his options over the weekend before having conversations with the Pacers.”
George’s options include playing out the season in Indiana and making an All-NBA team, which would make him eligible for a designated player extension next summer, although the Pacers may not like this route because it would mean they could potentially lose George for nothing.
If George doesn’t make an All-NBA team next season, the most the Pacers can offer is a five-year contract worth around $177 million. If George chose to leave next summer, another NBA team (such as the Lakers) could offer him a four-year deal worth approximately $130 million, a difference of around $3 million annually.
George could sign the five-year extension with the Pacers now, but it would appear to behoove him to wait and see a) whether or not he can make an All-NBA team next summer and b) what Indiana does this offseason to put a competitive team around him.
Given all the rumors of his interest in getting to — and open flirtation with — Los Angeles, one of the options George could be considering is a trade demand, although that’s just speculation at this point. The Lakers also may not want to give up assets for George if reports that they’re confident they can just sign him in free agency next summer are accurate.
Missing out on the All-NBA teams could prove to be a turning point in the seemingly never-ending George saga, and now we wait to see what option George ultimately decides upon during his weekend brainstorm.