Paul George Reveals Simple Reason He Didn’t Meet With Lakers In Free Agency

Photo of Paul George Reveals Simple Reason He Didn’t Meet With Lakers In Free Agency

Paul George to the Los Angeles Lakers was a done deal long before this offseason started. At least, that’s what everyone thought.

George stunned the NBA world by not only re-signing with the Oklahoma City Thunder, but by doing so before even taking a meeting with his hometown Lakers.

The star forward agreed to sign a four-year, $136.9 million contract with the Thunder at the beginning of free agency, electing to stay alongside Russell Westbrook rather than don the Purple and Gold.

While many thought it was a puzzling decision for George to not take a meeting with Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson, his reasoning is pretty sound.

“The reason why I didn’t (take a meeting) is that coming down to free agency and before it was about to open (on July 1), I felt really good where I was at,” George told USA TODAY. “I felt I was in a good place with Oklahoma. I wanted to come back to LA. That story was true. The narrative on that was true.

“That’s where my heart was. But this year, being in Oklahoma, I felt really good about the situation, I felt really good going forward, and I didn’t want to waste nobody’s time and take a meeting. And now I’m straddling the fence, putting more stress and more pressure on the situation. I felt good about it. I felt great where we were at, so I decided to do it early, to get it over with, and start to build. I didn’t get that chance to last summer, because I got traded late in the summer. So I never got that chance to start fresh, to work to get better with Russ and work to get better with the Thunder. So I wanted to attack that early and get ready for my career.”

George missed out on the chance to play with LeBron James, who chose to join the Lakers less than a day later, but the 28-year-old seems at peace with his decision to pair with “Brodie” and try to bring a title to OKC.

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