TMZ tried unsuccessfully to bait Paul George into free agency commentary while Marc Stein hints of an OKC Thunder return.
Tis the season for free agency rumors and as such Paul George was forced to tip-toe around a TMZ reporter’s questions. The result produced a clearly edited video of the reporter’s unsuccessful attempt. On the opposite front, Marc Stein has a positive report regarding Paul George returning to OKC.
TMZ tries to trap George into commenting:
Paul George spoke with media giant TMZ as he was leaving the Fortnite Celebrity Pro-Am tournament on Tuesday, June, 12th. As TMZ reporters infamously do he hounded George hunting for the answer he was looking for.
Of course the answer the reporter was looking for involved PG hinting or revealing he indeed will take his talents to Los Angeles. Paul George handled the exchange well, despite appearing visibly uncomfortable.
When pressed about playing in LA George responded by saying “I’m from LA, so I can say I love LA”. Just because a player loves a city does not indicate they want to play for that city. LeBron James has an unquestionable love for the city of Akron Ohio, yet he has left the Cavs once and will likely do so again this summer.
Former OKC Thunder player Kevin Durant supposedly has a love for his home state of Washington D.C. However, during his free agency KD did not even take a meeting with the Washington Wizards. And, Russell Westbrook, also an LA native has not publicly considered the idea of returning home to play for the Lakers or Clippers.
Moreover, the reporter asked PG if he would like to join forces with LeBron on the Lakers. George hit the reporter with this gem “I love playing with LeBron, I’ve been teammates with him every year on the All-Star team”. George did a nice job playing coy when it was clear the reporter was trying to bait him into trap questions.
The full exchange can be viewed below:
Rumor mill working overtime
More from Thunderous Intentions
There is a growing belief around the league that Oklahoma City has a far better chance to retain the free agent-to-be Paul George than many believed when the Thunder crashed out of the first round of the playoffs. As George prepares to field the Lakers’ long-anticipated interest, his willingness to post an Instagram picture of himself last month from a hospital bed after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left knee has helped to fuel the notion in some corners that he’s in no rush to leave OKC.
As per above, Spears stated OKC has a far greater chance at retaining PG than initially anticipated when OKC exited abruptly in the first round of the playoffs. The end to the season was underwhelming, with George playing a role in the Thunder’s post-season shortcomings. Such as not scoring during the final 40 minutes of Game 6. George had a valid excuse for his performance as he was battling knee and elbow injuries.
Hence, why George had surgery on both ailments within two weeks after the Thunder bowed out of the playoffs.
In conclusion, rumors are just beginning to pick up, with July 1st still over two weeks away. Furthermore, free agents are not allowed to officially ink their deals until July 6th due to the moratorium. See for example the now infamous DeAndre Jordan incident demonstrated how anything is possible.