Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Paul George is set to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason. With their embarrassing performance in the Western Conference Playoffs, there are speculations that George will be leaving the Thunder to team up with LeBron James somewhere else. Will the potential acquisition of George strengthen the Cleveland Cavaliers’ chance of re-signing James in the upcoming free agency?
Being buried deep in the luxury tax hell, the Cavaliers are in no position to give both LeBron James and Paul George maximum contracts this summer. However, Cavaliers General Manager Koby Altman will surely find a way to bring both superstars in Cleveland. Assuming that George really wants his way out of Oklahoma City, the Cavaliers could engage in a sign-and-trade deal with the Thunder to add him to their team, according to Tony Pesta of Fansided‘s King James Gospel.
“After an upsetting first season in Oklahoma City, it seems like Paul George already has one foot out the door. This is where the Cavaliers can look to pull off a sign and trade to bring George to the land. In this trade, the Thunder would receive Kevin Love and Jordan Clarkson. In the event that George is for sure leaving, this move would be the best decision for OKC. This way the Thunder will at least get something in return for George.”
Donovan Mitchell says he plans to recruit some star free agents to the Utah Jazz, including Paul Georgehttps://t.co/A5PJfO65pX
— The Salt Lake Tribune (@sltrib) June 7, 2018
In the suggested trade scenario, the Cavaliers will be sending Kevin Love and Jordan Clarkson to Oklahoma City for Paul George. If the proposed deal becomes a reality, it will help both teams in filling up the areas they need to improve on their roster. The acquisition of George will tremendously increase the Cavaliers’ chance of signing LeBron James to a long-term deal.
The 28-year-old small forward will undeniably be a huge help in James’ quest of winning more NBA championship titles. The 2017-18 NBA season proved that even playing alongside another superstar, George can still manage to establish an All-Star performance. In one season of teaming up with Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony, George remains impressive on both ends of the floor, finishing the regular season with 21.9 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 2.0 steals on 43 percent shooting from the field and 40.1 percent from beyond the arc.
Meanwhile, the departure of Paul George is definitely a huge loss for the Thunder, but engaging him in a sign-and-trade deal will be their best option than losing him in free agency without getting anything in return. The acquisition of Kevin Love will enable Carmelo Anthony to slide his normal position at 3 which could help him regain his rhythm in order to be more useful for the Thunder next season.