There’s no denying in the fact that Paul George desperately wanted out of Indiana in 2017. This narrative started with “I wanna go home, I wanna be with my family in LA” to him finally being traded to Oklahoma City Thunder. But what really were the driving forces for Paul George to leave Indiana?
Paul George once again says “That’s Indiana for you,” when it comes to the boos. Also says one day he will do a “tell all” on why he left. pic.twitter.com/yAvC7WGyEe
— Tyler Smith (@TylerSmith_ISL) December 10, 2019
In conversation with Quentin Richardson and Darius Miles Paul George admits it was Indiana Pacers’ lack of zeal to win that drove him out of there. His issues with NBA great Larry Bird led front office were quite public in 2017. Moreover, Indiana Pacers deserve this criticism for not consulting their main star before building around him.
Paul George never wanted to be the leader, or a star to be built around. He has in fact, always been comfortable being the #2 option be it with David West in Indiana Pacers, Russel Westbrook in Oklahoma City Thunder, or Kawhi Leonard in Los Angeles Clippers.
“They didn’t care to win”- Paul George blasts Indiana’s front office
Towards the end, Paul George may have been at odds with the front office but that was not always the case. In the podcast, he mentions that the league’s top power forward who he chose not name wanted to join them. However, the front office declined the offer stating they are a “small market” and didn’t have the recourses to afford ‘said’ power forward. That ‘top power forward’ may as well have been Anthony Davis.
Paul George explains why he wanted to leave the Pacers. They didn’t care to win
"They didn’t want to do it . . . I called my agent like, 'Man, get me up outta here. They don’t want to win.'"
— the Sports ON Tap (@thesportsontap) June 23, 2020
Instead, they offered to sign a top 25 or at best a top 20 power forward according to Paul George. On top of that this other player they were offering was coming off of injury. But George should know better than to comment on a player coming off of injury when he himself came back from one. He admits that is when he decided to leave.
“They didn’t want to do it. I called my agent ‘man get me out of here’. They don’t want to win”
Nevertheless, it was a win-win trade for both Paul George and Indiana Pacers. George is finally in LA, where he always wanted to be and Pacers have moved on from being 7th seed with Victor Oladipo being the star player they acquired in the PG trade.