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#pounditSaturday, July 20, 2024

Clippers unwilling to meet Paul George’s contract demands?

Paul George in a Clippers jersey

Feb 26, 2020; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Clippers guard Paul George (13) against the Phoenix Suns at Talking Stick Resort Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Clippers want to sign Paul George to an extension, but it does not sound like they are willing to meet his current contract demands.

George has a $48.8 million player option for next season that he is expected to decline. He is eligible for a full max extension from the Clippers of $221.1 million over four years. According to Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer, L.A. has only offered George a three-year deal to this point.

It makes sense for the Clippers to draw a line in the sand, even if they are running the risk of losing George in free agency. Kawhi Leonard, who is two years younger than the 34-year-old George, signed a three-year, $152.4 million extension with L.A. in January. There is no reason to think the Clippers would want to pay George more than that.

If and when George does decline his option and become a free agent, he will be eligible to sign a four-year, $212.2 million contract with other teams. Given George’s age and injury history, he might have a hard time convincing any team to pay him that much.

Joel Embiid seemed to make it clear recently that he wants the Philadelphia 76ers to make a run at George. While George has been linked to Philly for a while, a recent report indicated the Sixers are not as high on him now as they once were.

George averaged 22.6 points, 5.2 rebound and 3.5 assists across 74 games this season. That was more games than he has played in by a wide margin since he was with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2019-20. George picked a good time to showcase his durability, but there are still plenty of doubts that teams will want to be on the hook for more than $50 million for him when he is pushing 40 years old.

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