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#pounditFriday, January 22, 2021

Kawhi Leonard told Clippers of Paul George ‘that’s the guy’ to get

The LA Clippers are having a big week.

On Wednesday, they introduced Kawhi Leonard and Paul George to the media in a press conference. A day later they held an event for season ticket holders and announced plans for a new arena in Inglewood that would separate them from sharing a building with the Lakers. During that event, Clippers president Lawrence Frank shared some details on how the Leonard-George pairing came along.

Leonard wanted to play for the Clippers but wanted another top player on the roster with him. Kawhi tried to recruit Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, but those two turned to Brooklyn. Jimmy Butler was focused on the Miami Heat. And trade efforts for James Harden or Bradley Beal went nowhere. Frank says that when they put potential targets on a board for them to acquire to pair with Leonard, Kawhi said “that’s my guy” of George.

And that’s how the partnership was born.

Kawhi actually had been pushing to team with George since their respective times with the Spurs and Pacers. When you think about all the players the Clippers realistically could have gotten to team with Leonard, George probably is the best option. That’s why the Clippers gave up so much to get them.

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