Looks like the Indiana Pacers will end their offseason with a bang. After a slew of good-to-great moves during the summer, the franchise is poised to offer forward Paul George a new five-year deal worth around $90 million.
LeBron James vs. Paul George
Adrian Wojnarowski and Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports reported on Sunday night that a deal between the 2013 Most Improved Player and the Pacers franchise is imminent and will be finalised within the week.
“Back when I played, if they brought me in and were talking to me, I wanted to get it done before camp.” Pacers General Manager Larry Bird said in an interview with indystar.com. “Security is always the best thing you can have in this league.”
“The number has to be a number we both like. It’s all about money. He wants to be here. He’s told me that a million times. We want him here. Let’s just find a number that works for both.”
George is hoping that a deal will be finalised before the training camp starts.
“But whatever happens, happens. Right now, it’s about to be the start of the year. All the guys are here. We’re all fired up and ready to go. That’s where my focus is,” said the 6-foot-8 third year forward out of Fresno State.
George averaged career-high numbers of 17.4 points, 7.6 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.8 steals in 79 regular season games and 19.2 points, 7.4 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 1.3 steals in 19 postseason games in the 2012-13 NBA season.
Over the 2013 offseason, the Pacers acquired veteran big man Luis Scola in a trade with the Phoenix Suns. They also added forward Chris Copeland in free agency, stealing him away from East rivals New York Knicks as well as point guard C.J. Watson, who played for the Brooklyn Nets last season.
The Pacers core, who pushed the defending champions Miami Heat to seven games in the 2013 Eastern Conference Finals, will be returning for another run in the new season. They re-signed power forward David West to a 3-year extension in July and have center Roy Hibbert on a long-term deal as well.
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