PG heading to LA?
Paul George has reportedly informed the Oklahoma City Thunder that he will not be opting in for the final year of his contract and will therefore become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. That said, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reports George remains "seriously interested in returning to the Thunder in free agency."
In turning down the $20.7 million salary for the 2018-19 season with OKC, the 28-year old All-Star forward is now eligible to sign a five-year, $176 million contract extension this summer with the Thunder, according to Woj. Additionally, George could do a "one-plus-one" contract and return to free agency next summer.
Of course, there's a chance none of that happens and George simply decides to return home to California to play for the Los Angeles Lakers. George has been linked to the Lakers for a few years, dating back to his playing days with the Indiana Pacers. Before the trade that sent him to OKC, George had reportedly informed Indiana that he would sign with the Lakers as a free agent this summer.
The Lakers are one of several teams, including the Houston Rockets and Philadelphia 76ers, that will be interested in speaking with George once he officially becomes a free agent. Along with PG, the Lakers are also focused on landing LeBron James, in addition to a possible trade with San Antonio to acquire Kawhi Leonard. According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, Ramona Shelburne and Brian Windhorst, the "pressure is mounting" for the Lakers to pull off a trade with the Spurs' All-Star forward before Friday.