Just when you thought the Golden State Warriors couldn’t get any better, they’re trying to do just that by attempting to land Paul George.
The Warriors shocked and devastated the league when they signed Kevin Durant. To no one’s surprise, the addition of KD made Golden State impenetrable as they blew through the regular season and the playoffs posting a historic 15-1 postseason record.
Now The Athletic’s Tim Kawakami says the Warriors may go after Paul George when he becomes a free agent in 2018. Kawakami told Tim Bontemps on the Posting Up podcast that both he and Marcus Thompson (also of The Athletic) think that Golden State will pursue George.
We think they’re going to go after Paul George, somehow. I think Joe Lacob is going to try to find a way to get Paul George. I don’t know how that would happen, but I didn’t know how it was going to happen when they were—three years ago, when they said they were go after Durant.
The idea of the Warriors adding George is crazy and also improbable with their roster as is. But as unlikely as it may seem now, and as demoralizing as it would be for the rest of the league, that’s apparently a feat Golden State’s front office will try to pull off.
So will George be a Warrior? Of course it’s too soon to tell. A big part in where George signs depends on his happiness with the Oklahoma City Thunder, and if his heart is truly set on joining the Los Angeles Lakers.
George has tried to quiet the L.A. rumors since his trade to OKC, but if LeBron James ends up there next year all bets are off. If things don’t work out with the Thunder, however, and James is just trolling Laker fans and never wears the purple and gold, then George to Golden State could technically be a possibility. That, of course, is if they make room for him. In order to do it, they’d probably have to make a trade mid-season.
That scenario brings up the Klay Thompson trade rumors once again, which unfortunately for Thompson may never cease. Although Thompson is an All-Star too good to be tossed on the trading block and too important to the Warriors to be expendable, if they truly intend to get George letting go of Klay seems most likely.
George has a better overall game than Thompson but defensively Klay gets the nod. The question then is if trading Thompson would be worth it. If the Warriors could simply add George to the team they have now, of course it would make sense but with salary cap restraints that’s all but impossible.
With current player salaries, the Warriors already have a $124.2 million salary cap hit. With that commitment there’s no way Golden State could add George. In other words, a trade is the only plausible way for Warriors to acquire him. If the proposed trade is Thompson for George, it may not be worth it in the end. But if the Warriors’ front office can finesse their way around the cap or letting go of Thompson, watch out NBA.