The Cavaliers could’ve really used Paul George in their lineup to go against the Warriors, and it looks like they were very close to a deal with the Pacers.
Paul George had teams pursuing him from all over the place for weeks earlier in the NBA offseason, and it just became a matter of what deal the Indiana Pacers would pull the trigger on.
The team had interest from the Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics and plenty of other teams before eventually shipping the All-Star off to the Oklahoma City Thunder to team up with Russell Westbrook in the Western Conference.
However, it looks like PG13 was so close to staying in the Eastern Conference and heading over to the Cavaliers, if not for a last-second change of heart on the Pacers’ end of the bargain.
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on The Jump Tuesday, the Pacers and Cavaliers were reportedly close on a deal, before the Pacers inevitably backed out at the last moment.
“[Interim Cavaliers general manager] Koby Altman was very close to a deal on June 30th for Paul George,” Wojnarowski said. “It was so close, in fact, that Indiana was about to give permission to Paul George to get on the phone with Dan Gilbert. Indiana backed out of it and did the Oklahoma City deal.”
Nobody knows what exactly the Cavaliers were offering in the deal, and it looks like Kevin Love wasn’t a piece of any trade offered to the Pacers with George, which may have been a deciding factor.
The Pacers eventually got Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis from the Thunder in the deal, which isn’t a horrible haul, but many wondered why they didn’t pull the trigger on a deal with the Cavaliers or Celtics for potentially more talent. In the end, it gets George out of their conference and off of their rivals, but you have to wonder what they potentially declined for George.