In a blockbuster deal seemingly out of nowhere, the Oklahoma City have acquired Paul George in a trade with the Indiana Pacers
Paul George trade rumors have been flying around for months now, since the NBA Trade Deadline really. However, there seemed to be nothing concrete developing. What’s more, there was nothing about him that seemed to connect him to the Oklahoma City Thunder. Yet, with the new league year set to begin, that’s who ultimately emerged as the team able to get him.
The reigning league MVP, Russell Westbrook, will be playing with another superstar once again. The Thunder have acquired George in a trade. In return, the Pacers will get a package that is centered around Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis, though other pieces are included.
ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne was the first to report the deal, with Sam Amick of USA Today following after the fact with more details about the trade:
This is both unexpected and risky from the Thunder. George will be a free agent in 2018, and there hasn’t been any mention of him re-signing with Oklahoma City after this trade. However, in the short-term, this is an absolutely beautiful move for the Thunder to get back on a Finals-bound track.
George is a phenomenal complement to Westbrook. He’s at his best when he doesn’t have to be a primary ball-handler and should thrive with a playmaker of the 2016-17 MVP’s caliber. What’s more, George is an elite defender that offers tremendous versatility and should help the Thunder with their shortcomings there. All in all, this is a big gamble, but one that could pay off hugely for Oklahoma City.