The Los Angeles Lakers are officially embarking on a new path under president of basketball operations Magic Johnson. Though the regime has changed the goal remains the same, return the Lakers to its former glory.
In order to compete in this era of NBA teams must have multiple stars. Though the Lakers currently have none, one name that has been mentioned as a possibility for years is Indiana Pacers’ wing Paul George.
Though the Pacers goal is to surround George with enough talent to convince him to sign an extension with them, that hasn’t happened as of yet, forcing the Pacers to consider moving their star. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical, a fear for the Pacers and anyone considering a trade for him, is the possibility of him signing with the Lakers as a free agent in 2018:
“For teams considering a trade for George, here’s the risk: As a free agent in the summer of 2018, he has considered re-signing with Indiana or joining his hometown Los Angeles Lakers, sources tell The Vertical.”
For the last few years, the Lakers have been unable to convince any big names to join the franchise. But with Magic in charge, along with new GM Rob Pelinka and head coach Luke Walton, there is a belief that the Lakers inability to attract big-name free agents could soon change.
Of course this is all based on the possibility that George actually makes it to free agency. An extension in Indiana would be far more money than the Lakers could offer him and the Pacers are hard at work trying to swing some deals to make him believe it’s worth staying there long term.
If George does make it to the open market however, expect Magic to be making his move immediately as George is exactly the kind of piece the Lakers need to get back on the path to contention.