It is official: Paul George is no longer a Pacer. Game over man, game over.
However, in the ultimate twist, the trade comes from the Western Conference and the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder were able to win the sweepstakes with the overwhelming offer of Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis.
No draft picks, no smattering of non-guaranteed contracts. Just… That.
Here’s a quick rundown:
Yes, it is incredibly likely that Paul George will leave in a year. But, they cleared 84 million dollars of Victor Oladipo off the books the next 4 seasons which is crippling for a team like the Thunder. And they showed Russell Westbrook they’ll do what it takes to put pieces around him, which won’t be forgotten when he is offered a max contract to stay in OKC.
Oladipo wins because he just got moved to the one market that will love him unconditionally regardless of his warts. He’s making 21 million dollars a year to be an above average defensive player who shoots okay, dribbles fine, and does other things good too. But IU fans will defend the hell out of him because he went to IU, so unchecked loyalty. Good for you Oladipo.
The Pacers Ticket Office
See reasons above. The Pacers will probably sell more season tickets this year because an overpaid IU alum is on roster over a “traitor” who also happens to be a top 5 forward in the league. Ugh.
The Sixers may legit have a top 8 roster in the East now in terms of pure talent. Who knew tanking half a decade would lead us here… weird.
I mean…. at least the Bulls squeezed 2 NBA starters (for their roster) and a top 10 pick out of Jimmy Butler. This has to weirdly feel good
Obviously free agency still needs to unfold, but one of the better guys who defends you just flipped conferences for the 2nd time in a week. And all the Western Conference teams have to kick the shit out of each other for a chance to see you in the finals after you sweep 3 series and rest. Why the hell would LeBron ever leave Cleveland aside from the fact it’s Cleveland?
All the talk of great offers and this is what you pull out of thin air. Two young players but no other picks. It is a fact they had multiple offers for multiple first rounders at the trade deadline. Paul George wanting to play in LA has been a thing for like 2 years. If I knew it, how the hell didn’t they? The Pacers may love Sabonis and Oladipo… but on the surface they lost this deal, bad.
Oh Danny Ainge you beautiful idiot. You have all these pieces to complete your team, veteran leadership, young talent, draft picks, and you refuse to do a damn thing with it. They now have to get Gordon Hayward, there are no maybes about it. They need a scoring wing so LeBron can’t be stuck on Isaiah Thomas all game. Ainge played a game of chicken with the Pacers and he lost.
I’m going to slam my head through a brick wall every time I hear Lance Stephenson can run the point, lead this team to the playoffs, or start. The dude is a sixth man… let him come off the bench, play 6 minutes a quarter balls to the wall and get him the hell out. He can’t play with controlled chaos like Russ… just let the man ball on a (minutes) budget and get the hell out of the way.
The NBA All Star game just became the US Olympic team vs Egypt. Why even show up to the game? Just seed the top 16 teams by record and see what happens. I for one don’t want to see the 34-48 Pistons in a 7 game series with Cleveland in May. Just… fix it Adam Silver.