All kinds of anonymous sources have had plenty of chances to talk about the rumored trade talks between the Los Angeles Lakers and Indiana Pacers centered on Paul George over the last few weeks. Over the weekend, someone close to the Lakers decided to go on the record.
It’s important to note that Larry Nance, Jr. has absolutely no say (or at least very, very little) in the Lakers personnel decisions, but for whatever it’s worth, during an appearance on the Hoopshype Podcast with Alex Kennedy he made it sound like he thinks George might be on the way (h/t Jacob Rude of Lakers Outsiders).
When Kennedy asked Nance if he thought George would be on the Lakers to start the season, Nance said “Just to make it fun, I’m going to say yes.”
That may not seem like it means much, but I think it does mean that whoever the reporter that gets the scoop on the George trade is, they have to add “as first reported by Larry Nance, Jr.” to their report. That’s just journalism 101.
Nance also had an interesting perspective on the talks as a whole:
“That’s a superstar. There’s very few of those in the NBA. Any team he goes to, he’s going to up their win total quite a bit. It is exciting. It’s a little bit of both, exciting (and) nerve-wracking because in order to get a player like that, you got to give something up. This kind of used to be my favorite time of the year, getting to follow it, pay attention to it. Now it’s a little bit more real when you’re potentially in the mix. It’s a whole different world that opened up now.”
The summer, filled with its Woj-bombs and Stein-scoops is a ton of fun to watch as a fan, and some players talk about following it as a fan and having notifications turned on for the tweets of those two and other reporters during the rumor season.
As a player in the league, the context is different though. On one hand, the prospect of playing with Paul George is probably exciting as hell, but on the other, in order to get him the Lakers would likely have to ship off one of Nance’s teammates, a brother in arms he shares a locker room with.
That’s the human element that is often ignored, it was interesting to listen to Nance acknowledge it, even while predicting George will end up in Los Angeles.