Paul George has been one of the hottest names on the NBA trade market over the last couple of days. He has been rumored to be a potential blockbuster trade centerpiece all season long, but now that the trade deadline is less than 24 hours away, talks are beginning to heat up.
A previous report from the Inquisitr suggests that George could be traded to the Boston Celtics within the next few hours. Other reports suggest that the Los Angeles Lakers are pushing to acquire the Pacers’ star. Despite those two reports, it doesn’t appear likely that George will be traded ahead of the deadline.
According to a new report from NBA.com’s David Aldridge, the Pacers are not expected to move George and are instead simply gauging his trade value on the market for future reference.
Multiple teams around the league believe Indy isn't seriously shopping Paul George, & is gathering info rather than looking to move him now.
— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) February 22, 2017
Larry Bird has been aggressive in trade talks so far this week. They have been linked to Brook Lopez and Jahlil Okafor in particular, while other reports have linked them to Allen Crabbe, Ed Davis, and Arron Afflalo. Most believe that the Pacers would rather add talent around George than actually trading their star away.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) February 22, 2017
Throughout the course of the 2016-17 season with the Pacers thus far, George has averaged 22.3 points per game to go along with 6.2 rebounds and 3.3 assists. He has shot 44.6 percent from the field overall and has knocked down 38.2 percent of his three-point attempts. George has also shot 91.4 percent from the foul line.
At just 26-years-old, George’s trade value is at an all-time high. Indiana has to make a decision, as reports coming out have started linking him to the Los Angeles Lakers in 2018 free agency.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported earlier today that the Pacers were listening to offers for George. His report carries a lot of weight, as Wojnarowski is widely considered the best and most plugged-in reporter in the NBA media.
“‘The Pacers are working the trade deadline on parallel fronts: pursuing deals that will bring talent into Indiana to sell George on signing a long-term extension — and soliciting deal offers on George that would signal a rebuild around center Myles Turner,’ league sources told The Vertical.”
“Ultimately, the Pacers will have to evaluate the two paths and make a decision before Thursday’s NBA trade deadline. There’s no urgency to make a deal for George, unless the Pacers fear the Boston Celtics could ultimately provide Indiana the best possible package of assets in a deal — and think that option could disappear if Boston makes a deal with Chicago for Jimmy Butler.”
Just a couple short days ago, ESPN NBA analyst Marc Stein reported that at least one NBA exec believes that George will be traded to the Celtics ahead of the deadline. The report is obviously vague, but adds to the suspense surrounding George and the trade market.
— The Vertical (@TheVertical) February 22, 2017
Stein went on to detail that Danny Ainge desperately wants to bring a star in before the deadline. George is one of his top targets, while both Jimmy Butler and Blake Griffin have also been linked to the Celtics.
Expect to continue hearing rumors surrounding George up until the deadline. Indiana doesn’t seem like they will trade their superstar, but a single offer could change Larry Bird’s mind.
Do you think the Indiana Pacers will trade Paul George ahead of the NBA trade deadline? Which team do you think he would fit best with and what will that team have to give up to get him? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below!
[Featured Image by Nick Wass/AP Images]