Cavaliers Rumors: Paul George Committing To Cleveland If LeBron James Stays Beyond 2018

Paul George is the hottest name in the NBA trade rumors with teams like the Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers, Los Angeles Lakers, and San Antonio Spurs showing interest in acquiring him from the Indiana Pacers. George will be a free agent at the end of the 2017-18 NBA season and he intends to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers. However, that fact has not stopped the Cavaliers from pursuing him.

According to Bleacher Report, Marc Stein of ESPN and Joe Vardon first confirmed that the Cavaliers are involved in trade talks with the Pacers and Denver Nuggets. The rumored deal will reportedly send Paul George to Cleveland with Kevin Love going to Denver. There is no official word regarding the deal but there are a lot of versions of the three-team trade.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are looking to upgrade their roster after losing to the Golden State Warriors in the 2017 NBA Finals in five games. If Cleveland can replace Love with George and they sign Carmelo Anthony after his rumored buyout, they have the firepower to battle the Warriors.

However, there problems for all sides involved with George being a one-year rental and James leaving Cleveland to move into the West Coast. The Cavaliers also does not have a general manager at the moment after they fired David Griffin a couple of weeks ago.

Kevin Love and Paul George could be playing for different teams next season.
Kevin Love #0 of the Cleveland Cavaliers defends against Paul George #13 of the Indiana Pacers during an NBA Playoff game. [Image by Joe Robbins/Getty Images]

Nevertheless, there is still a chance that the Cavaliers could end up acquiring Paul George, especially if they can hire a new general manager as soon as possible. ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith noted on First Take(h/t Cavaliers Nation) that George is open to signing an extension with Cleveland under one condition. That condition is LeBron James should put off his move to Los Angeles and stay with the Cavaliers.

“From what I heard as recently as a couple of days ago, is that he’s letting word leak to the Cleveland Cavaliers that if LeBron indeed elects to stay in Cleveland, then Paul George won’t depart Cleveland as long as LeBron is still there if they pull off a trade to acquire him.”

LeBron James has been linked to a second move away from Cleveland to a new team out West as soon as the 2017 NBA Finals was over. The Lakers are James’ likely destination with Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka already having the cap space in the summer of 2018. Mike Wise of The Undefeated reported that the Clippers are already out in the running to sign James if he becomes a free agent.

LeBron James can opt out of his contract at the end of the 2017-18 NBA season.
LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers looks on during the 2017 NBA Finals. [Image by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images]

If the Cavaliers managed to acquire Paul George this summer and they ended up winning the championship next year, it would be hard to see him and LeBron James depart Cleveland. It’s also possible that the Lakers could end up signing both players when they become free agents next summer since the Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka have hinted on going after two superstars.

However, it should be noted that these are just NBA rumors at moment and nothing has been confirmed. The 2017 NBA Free Agency starts on July 1 and fans should expect more speculations regarding the Cavaliers, George, James and the rest of the entire league.

[Featured Image by Joe Robbins/Getty Images]