If you are the LeBron led Cavs who just got annihilated off the court by the Golden State Warriors, you can not stay pat. I said after they lost game five that they needed to make a major move, but didn’t foresee that move out there. This, the potential of a Paul George trade, is exactly what they need. If the Cavs do in fact move on from Love in this trade, they are removing someone who has come up small in the big moments way too often to get a guy in return who isn’t afraid of anyone.
What about the concern that George will be a one-year rental and just move onto LA after this year? What about it? You can’t just bring the same big three back as last year and expect a different result. Plus, maybe the All-Star gets next to the best player in the world in a winning culture and decides to stay. If you are Cleveland’s ownership and you have numerous reports that LeBron may move to LA after this upcoming year, wouldn’t you want to bring someone here that he has said publicly he really likes? Who knows, maybe the Cavs win the Finals next year with George and James which makes them both stay with the Cavs.
While there are certainly question marks surrounding the future if the Cavs pull the trigger on this, it is a lot better than just standing pat and expecting the results to change.
Los Angeles Lakers:
To me this is the most interesting aspect of this all. If you are the Lakers, do you trade for a guys who supposedly wants to play for you anyway just to eliminate the chance he doesn’t fall in love with another team? My answer is yes. If you have an All-Star player wanting to come to your struggling franchise, you do it. I know L.A. might be mortgaging their future slightly by completing this move, but by how much really? Other than Ingrim, who is untouchable? The answer is no one which includes the number two overall pick in this draft. That is right, the pick that the Lakers own this year should be on the table. Let’s just say they pick Lonzo Ball, is he really going to develop into George? Probably not, and if he does it isn’t till three to five years down the line. Not only does George improve L.A. on the court, but also in their recruiting game as well. For the past several years, most major free agents haven’t even considered L.A. as a landing spot because of their obvious struggles. While the Lakers still might struggle with the 27-year-old guard on their roster, it will at least allows Magic Johnson to get a meeting with other star players. Then, you know and I know, once you bring somebody in for a meeting in sunny, buetiful Los Angeles, it is hard for that person to say no. Could he come anyway, sure, but why risk it? The question here is, do the Lakers have enough to entice the Pacers.
Your superstar and face of the franchise tells you he is leaving next year no matter what, what do you do? While some have suggested just keeping him for the heck of it, I couldn’t disagree with this more. If you are the Pacers, you have to get at least something in return which is exactly what I think they are going to do. The question then becomes when do you let him go? If I am Indiana, unless there is a knock-you-dead deal out there, I wait until the deadline. Even with Cleveland and Golden State being as dominate as they are, I would never underestimate another team’s GM or owner convincing themselves that if they got George they could compete. However, I completely get the appeal of not playing the wait and see game as well.
If I am the Pacers, I try and get Kevin Love in return. If that is a no, I hang onto George and try and let his value raise as teams get further into their 2017-18 campaigns. Nonetheless, a disappointing position for Indiana basketball fans to find themselves in.
-Article by Nick Freind