Rumors have surfaced indicating the Indiana Pacers were considering trading Paul George to various teams not in Oklahoma. George has indicated his desire to play for the Los Angeles Lakers, but could he have a change of heart in Oklahoma City?
In a twist of speculation, Paul George was traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Damontas Sabonis and Victor Oladipo.
Many believed George would be a one year rental for the Thunder and bolt to the Los Angeles Lakers next year. It seems now George could be having a change of heart.
He recently indicated he felt the Pacers championship window had closed and that he would be foolish to leave the Thunder if they had a successful year. An encouraging sign for the Thunder is that they have the reigning league MVP coming off a historic season.
But will a Russell Westbrook and Paul George pairing be enough to win championships in the western conference?
Odds say no.
Taking a look at the western conference on paper, it seems like a difficult task. Currently, the Golden State Warriors look even better than last year with the addition of Omri Caspi and Nick Young. The Houston Rockets kept their core in tact, and added all-star guard Chris Paul. Rumors indicate they could add the New York Knicks forward, Carmelo Anthony later this summer. The Spurs are still the Spurs and the surprise Minnesota Timberwolves seemingly became arguably the second or third best team out west over night. That’s a tough conference. And we’re not even talking about how the Sacramento Kings and new feel Los Angeles teams have improved this summer.
While the Thunder should still be competitive, they don’t have the offensive firepower or defensive efficiency to take down the western conference power teams — yet.
If George is expecting to win in Oklahoma City with Westbrook, it may take another star player to join them. Oklahoma City does look better than half the western teams. But George will have to have Westbrook’s commitment to stay with the Thunder past this year as well. Westbrook could leave in next year’s free agency crippling any chance of a championship coming to the midwest.
If that’s the case, George could see himself wearing another uniform next season.