Paul George was very close to becoming to a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers according to a new report.
On The Jump, ESPN’s Adrian Wojarnowski stated that George was almost given permission to talk to Cavs owner Dan Gilbert before Indiana pulled out of the deal and he was dealt to the Thunder.
Just how close was Paul George to teaming up with LeBron? pic.twitter.com/e6ulIp0FFA— ESPN (@espn) July 18, 2017
This falls in line with earlier reports that the Cavs were surprised by the Pacers’ decision to deal George to the Thunder and that the Pacers did not want to send George to a team in the Eastern Conference. It also falls in line with the Cavs’ failure this offseason to retool or adjust in a way that may better help them compete with the Warriors.
There’s also the question here about how the Cavs internally handled these trade talks. Koby Altman has been the known point man, but Gilbert has also been involved with Cleveland’s trade talks and free agent pursuits. Who specifically was ultimately caught off guard by the last minute changes is a question that would be worth an answer at some point.
And had this gone through, maybe LeBron James isn’t “concerned” about Cleveland’s offseason. This one trade would have really changed the entire perception of the Cavs’ summer.