While the Lakers have a very important decision to make this off-season with Dwight Howard, Indiana Pacers forward Paul George has Laker fans salivating about the possibility of the Los Angeles product becoming the heir to Kobe’s throne.
On ESPN Radio 710, Mark Willard and Mychal Thompson discussed the possibility of George coming on-board in 2014-15, when the Lakers have ample cap-space to accommodate his contract needs.
So, what needs to happen for George to be a Laker in two years? George is eligible to get his contract extended after this season from his rookie deal and if he were to decline that offer, which could be for four-years and $40 million, he would become a restricted free-agent in the summer of ’13-14.
George has enjoyed a breakout season and postseason as the former Fresno State forward averaged 17.4 points, 7.6 rebounds and 4.1 assists during the regular season.
The Pacers head into the off-season with several question marks. David West is set to become a free-agent and Danny Granger’s contract expires at the end of the season. It’d be hard to imagine that George would decline the Pacers offer in the off-season, but he might think he could get more money.
If George does reject the Pacers offer, the Lakers would be in prime position to offer him a contract as a restricted free agent. To ensure that the Pacers wouldn’t match the offer, the Lakers could put a “poison pill” into the contract, making it detrimental to the Pacers if they were to match the offer.
While a lot has to be done for George to get to the point where the Lakers could offer him a contract, there’s no doubt his representatives will mention something to him.
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