Tuesday, 23 October, 2018

Thunder have 'a real opportunity to keep' Paul George in free agency

It Sounds Like The Rockets Need to be Crossed off Le Bron James List It Sounds Like The Rockets Need to be Crossed off Le Bron James List
Kristopher Love | 09 June, 2018, 06:22

James and Oklahoma City Thunder forward Paul George had reportedly had conversations about potentially joining forces - with the only team capable of hauling in such max-level contracts being the Lakers.

One of the reasons why the Houston Rockets are considered to be real contenders for James is because they have Paul. Woj, speaking on his podcast, said: "When the Rockets made that deal for Chris Paul, knowing they would re-sign him, they made a conscious decision that they were gonna have to live with [paying him] $46, $47 million a year salary when he's not almost the player anymore in his late 30's". With their success in the 2017-18 National Basketball Association season, it is a no-brainer for the Rockets to re-sign Paul. "I don't imagine it playing out that way".

With the great LeBron James being a free agent this offseason, the Lakers will surely be pursuing him this summer. This season, Paul missed 24 regular-season games, and he missed the final two games of the Western Conference Finals against the Golden State Warriors after suffering a right hamstring strain in Game 5. Chris Paul didn't turn down $200 million from the Clippers because he thought that somehow the Rockets were gonna talk him into saving them luxury-tax money.

Pete Zayas of Lakers Film Room told the Under the Buss Podcast that LeBron James has already chose to join the Lakers - and that Paul George will signing with them as well.

Since acquiring him from the Indiana Pacers last July, George has averaged 21.9 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.0 steals across 79 appearances with OKC. Paul and James may have been close pals, but neither of the two superstars is expected to take a discount just to play together.

"If Paul stays with the Rockets, Houston becomes the closest thing to a favourite on my scorecard, no matter how complicated it would be for the 65-win Rockets and their general manager, Daryl Morey, to orchestrate the requisite salary-cap gymnastics to bring James in". They made a conscious decision that they were gonna have to live with $46, $47 million-a-year salary when he's not almost the player anymore in his late 30s.