Paul George search for a new team is over. He has found a new home with the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder’s off-season was quiet as of a week ago, however, hat just changed. It just got loud in OKC adding George to the roster.
The Thunder have rediscovered their edge. In a low-key way, the Thunder may have been eyeing Paul George all along. The Thunder were not among one of the teams that were reported to be interest in him. The Boston Celtics, however, were one of those teams.
George will not be seen wearing a Celtics uniform. He will be playing for the Thunder, it is official, according to ESPN. The addition of Paul George marks a solid step for the Thunder towards rebuilding their team. It was a smart move.
They added two crucial factors, height, and an above average shooter. George can shoot well from the field, and also take the ball to the basket when needed. And Oklahoma City gave the Pacers what they wanted in the trade.
It is costing the Thunder two players. In exchange for George, the they will send Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis to the Pacers. Indiana will not even be receiving a draft pick out of the trade. One reason for this straight two-for-one trade was, there was risk involved for the Thunder in pursuing George. He could leave in 2018.
Thunder General Manager Sam Presti spoke on what the team is doing, “We’re involved in everything.” He continued to say that the Thunder are going to chase after everything. He asked fans not to be upset if it turns out they are going after someone the press and fans may not expect. “We’re going to make all those calls. We’re going to pursue all those things.”
Acquiring George was a risk that the Thunder were simply willing to take. They might be worried about the status of Russell Westbrook. Oklahoma City wanted to secure All-Star talent just in case things fell off with Westbrook.
Short-term, George might solve their problems. If the Thunder want to solve long-term issues there will be many steps left for them to take. The off-season is far from over and they still have time to figure things out.
Last season the Thunder had a solid run. They finished off the year as the sixth place team of the Western Conference, with a winning record of 47-35. The Thunder even landed a front row seat in the postseason, but the playoffs turned out to be a short stint, thanks to the Houston Rockets.
Oklahoma City would not make it past Round 1 due to Houston. The Rockets eliminated the Thunder in Game 5, 105-99. With a new asset on their team, the Thunder are hoping for better results next season.
Was trading Paul George worth it for the Pacers? What is next for the Thunder? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Commentary by Cody Macleod