“I have no idea where that came from,” Kupchak said. “I’m superstitious enough that I’m not going to look to do something or take something for granted before we have it.”
WEDNESDAY, 12:00pm: The Lakers want to make an aggressive run at trading for Paul George this summer, and they’re willing to give up their 2016 first-round pick and more to Indiana, as HBO’s Bill Simmons hears (Twitter link). Such a proposal would be unlikely to sway the Pacers, Simmons concedes, and the Lakers won’t even have a first-rounder to offer if they slip out of the top three in the May 17th lottery, a scenario with a roughly 44% chance of happening.
It would probably require the inclusion of D’Angelo Russell to prompt the Pacers to consider any such offer, Simmons suggests, noting that Pacers president of basketball operations Larry Bird isn’t sentimental and will make a drastic move if he deems it necessary, as the uncertainty over Frank Vogel‘s job status demonstrates (Twitter links). George, a native of Los Angeles County, is under contract for at least two more years, with a player option worth more than $20.7MM for the 2018/19 season.
The Lakers reportedly offered last year’s No. 2 pick, which they ultimately used on Russell, to the Kings in trade talks about DeMarcus Cousins this past June. Lakers basketball operations chief Jim Buss faces a self-imposed deadline of next spring to have to turned around the franchise’s sagging fortunes, having said he’ll resign if he fails to accomplish that. The team was a franchise-worst 17-65 this past season.
What sort of offer do you think it would take to pry George from the Pacers? Leave a comment to share your thoughts.