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#pounditSunday, October 24, 2021

Articles tagged: Paul George

Paul George defends stars getting preferential treatment from Clippers

Paul George

Paul George defended the preferential treatment star players receive with the Los Angeles Clippers.

There was talk at various points last year that some Clippers players were upset with the star treatment George and Kawhi Leonard received. A report in January said some Clippers players struggled with the preferential treatment for Kawhi and PG. Another report surfaced in October said the same thing, but focused on Kawhi.

George led the Clippers with 33 points in an opening-night victory over the rival Lakers on Tuesday night. He was interviewed by TNT after the game and asked about the star treatment reports. George defended the practice.

“The dudes that put in the work that built themselves up to be where they at, it’s a reason they get to that level. They know what they need and they know what makes them play at a high level,” George said.

George also hinted that the players who had the issues are no longer with the team.

“Whoever that offends, we ain’t have that history right now in this locker room.”

We have an idea of whom George is talking about with that comment.

George is right in a sense. Yes, players who have put in the work to build themselves into stars should know what type of effort and training they need. At the same time, those players are team leaders and cannot take advantage of the situation nor set bad examples by letting others think they don’t need to work hard.

If Tuesday night’s win is any indication, maybe the Clippers have figured things out this season.

Doc Rivers throws shade at Paul George over recent criticism

Doc Rivers

Paul George recently indicated that he was unhappy with the way Doc Rivers utilized him last year, and Rivers was initially diplomatic with his response. Now that some time has passed, the former Los Angeles Clippers coach seems to be more willing to share his actual thoughts on the subject.

George said on the “All the Smoke” podcast a couple weeks ago that Rivers tried to use him like a pindown shooter and did not involve him in enough pick-and-roll plays or post-ups. Rivers initially took the high road but noted that George played in more pick-and-rolls last season than any other in his career. The coach reiterated that during an interview with Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times this week, but he added a bit more commentary.

When asked about George, Rivers said he understands that not every player will enjoy playing for him. He also noted how George struggled in the postseason and was probably looking for someone to blame. Rivers said he joked with someone recently and said, “Paul loved playing for me until the playoffs.”

“Paul struggled in the playoffs,” Rivers said. “He struggled in the Dallas series. He needed somebody to blame, and I’m fine with that. Blame me. [Expletive], I can handle it.”

George tried to clean up his comments on Rivers after the fact, but it certainly seems like they annoyed Doc. It’s hard to argue with Doc’s response, too, especially when you look at George’s horrific stats in playoff elimination games.

Even if Rivers did make mistakes with the Clippers, George needs to prove he can play at a high level in the postseason before pointing the finger at someone else. Rivers has a championship on his resume. George does not.

Anthony Davis confirms he almost teamed up with Paul George

Anthony Davis

Anthony Davis and Paul George are now lined up on opposite sides in Los Angeles, but it almost could have looked a lot different for the two of them.

Davis, the Los Angeles Lakers star, confirmed on Sunday that he once had a conversation with George about teaming up on the Indiana Pacers, per Kyle Goon of Southern California News Group. Davis did add however that the discussion fizzled when it became clear the partnership would not happen.

George had said this past summer that “the best power forward” in the NBA was ready to team up with him on the Indiana Pacers in 2017. The Pacers were allegedly unwilling though to trade for the player (who we now know for certain was Davis). That led George to question the team’s priorities and ultimately request a trade.

Davis instead got traded to the Lakers a couple years later and just won his first NBA championship with them. Meanwhile, George was traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder and is now with his hometown LA Clippers, just signing a massive $190 million extension with them. Thus, the failed partnership ended up working out for both of them in a sense.

Doc Rivers responds to Paul George’s latest criticism

Doc Rivers

Doc Rivers is once again defending himself after Paul George said he disliked how he was used in the former Los Angeles Clippers coach’s system.

As part of an interview with the “All The Smoke” podcast, George said Rivers tried to use him as a Ray Allen-like pin-down shooter. George felt that was not the best use of his skills, adding that he’d have done better with “some mixes of some pick-and-roll, and post ups.”

Rivers was diplomatic when asked about George’s claims, but his frustration was apparent.

“Well, that’s just Paul’s opinion,” Rivers said in an interview with ESPN’s Cassidy Hubbarth. “I enjoyed coaching Paul. You know, I think if you go back and look at the stats, Paul played in more pick-and-rolls this last year than he ever did in his entire career.

“So I don’t know how that’s possible, and I wouldn’t mind playing like Ray Allen if I was a player. I think Ray Allen was pretty special. But listen, that’s his opinion. I’m fine with that. The team was second in the league, I think in scoring. Scoring wasn’t a problem, you know? It was winning that was the problem.”

The statistics actually back Rivers up on this. As shared by Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer, George finished 33 percent of all his plays using the pick-and-roll under Rivers. That represented the highest mark of his career.

Maybe George knows that, which is why he tried to clean up his comments after the fact. Ultimately, though, the damage was done. George’s critics see him as a player who refuses to take responsibility when he comes up short, as illustrated by quotes like this one. Acting like his usage was part of the problem when the stats simply don’t reflect his assertions will only give those critics more to work with.

Clippers sent Paul George some wine to celebrate contract extension

Paul George

Paul George on Thursday signed a massive contract extension with the Los Angeles Clippers, and the team sent him a present to celebrate.

George was already under contract to make $35.4 million in the upcoming season. The extension gives him four more years at $190 million.

To celebrate, the Clippers sent George some nice wine. PG13 shared photos on his Instagram Story Thursday of the wine, which comes from Napa Valley winery Caymus Vineyards.

George appeared to appreciate the gift and thanked Steve Ballmer and Lawrence Frank.

George is hoping that signing his contract extension will help convince Kawhi Leonard to remain with the team.

Clippers fans, show everyone who runs Los Angeles with this great “We Run LA” shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend – you can buy it here:

Paul George weighs in on Kawhi Leonard’s long-term future with Clippers

Paul George

Paul George has committed long-term to the Los Angeles Clippers, and he’s hoping that might push Kawhi Leonard to do the same.

George and Leonard both previously had player options for 2021-22, but George opted to sign a five-year maximum extension with the Clippers. Leonard’s long-term status is still pending, but George made it clear he’d consulted with Leonard before signing his deal.

“I’m hopeful,” George said of Leonard’s long-term future with the Clippers, via Mark Medina of USA Today. “He’s one of the guys I talked and informed this is a decision I wanted to make and be long term.

“What I would love is to play with him for the rest of his contract. It’s Kawhi’s decision.”

George had a lot of financial reasons to sign this deal. One wonders how Leonard is feeling about his future, though. He’s more tight-lipped than George, but was also the one who put the entire process of playing with George in motion. Only time will tell, but the Clippers would certainly love to keep both.

Clippers fans, show everyone who runs Los Angeles with this great “We Run LA” shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend – you can buy it here:

Paul George signs massive extension with Clippers

Paul George

The Los Angeles Clippers fell well short of expectations last season, but they are committed to keeping their core together.

Paul George signed a massive extension with the Clippers on Thursday that will pay him more than $200 million over the next five seasons, his agent told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. George was still under contract for $35.4 million for the 2020-21 season, so the extension will pay him $190 million more over the next four years.

George’s new deal includes a player option for the 2024-25 season.

The contract figures are not set in stone, as George has 10 years of service time and is thus eligible to be paid 35 percent of the salary cap. The salary cap is not expected to rise as much as it would have before the coronavirus pandemic due to decreased league revenue.

Kawhi Leonard is only under contract through the 2020-21 season with a player option for 2021-22, so it’s possible he could be next to sign an extension with L.A.

George cited team chemistry issues after the Clippers were bounced from Orlando earlier this year. He was recently critical of Doc Rivers for failing to make adjustments and not utilizing him properly.

While he has not performed well in the postseason, George remains one of the premier players in the NBA. The Clippers are hoping the 30-year-old’s best playoff games are ahead of him, particularly in elimination games.

Clippers fans, show everyone who runs Los Angeles with this great “We Run LA” shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend – you can buy it here:

Damian Lillard takes another shot at Paul George

Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard is rekindling his beef with Paul George for another round.

The Portland Trail Blazers star took a shot at George on Instagram over the weekend. Responding to a post about how George had said that he wanted to retire as a member of the LA Clippers, Lillard commented “Al Capone.”

“Al Capone” is a way of saying “all cap.” “Cap” is slang for a lie.

George’s comments were indeed met with skepticism after he made similar remarks back when he was with the Indiana Pacers then the Oklahoma City Thunder, only to force his way out of both teams. Lillard and George also beefed on Instagram during the Orlando bubble. George’s history of switching teams was the subject of the shade Lillard threw at him.

Lillard eventually had to apologize after family members got into the beef. Shots at George directly still appear to be very much fair game though.

Photo: Frenchieinportland/Wikimedia via CC-BY-SA 4.0

Doc Rivers responds to criticism from Paul George

Doc Rivers

Paul George openly placed blame on Doc Rivers this week for the Los Angeles Clippers falling short of expectations last season, and the coach does not seem to agree with the criticism.

During an appearance on the “All the Smoke” podcast with Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, George said the Clippers failed to make proper adjustments after they fell into a 3-1 hole against the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference semis. George also indicated that he felt Rivers did not utilize him properly.

Rivers issued a response on Sunday. He jokingly noted that new Clippers coach Ty Lue was an assistant on his staff last season, so George is also blaming his new coach for what went wrong. Rivers also said he enjoyed coaching George and acknowledged he could have done a better job.

George cited team chemistry issues after the Clippers were bounced in Orlando, and some of that would obviously fall on the coach. There was also a report that some of Rivers’ decisions left players scratching their heads, and it’s fair to wonder if George was one of the people behind that.

It’s not a great look for George to be pointing the finger, especially when you look at his stats in elimination games. The Clippers obviously felt Rivers was at least partially responsible for their underachievement, hence why he was fired. Still, George and his teammates should have played better.

Paul George does damage control with Doc Rivers comments

Paul George

Paul George is trying to set the record straight about some recent comments that were perceived as a shot at former head coach Doc Rivers.

The LA Clippers forward spoke on Friday after his podcast appearance this week criticizing the team’s lack of adjustments in the playoffs.

“[Doc] is a helluva coach. I respected him,” George said, per ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk. “The notion is out there that I don’t respect Doc or [that I was] putting blame on Doc. … Let’s clear that up.” George also said that he did not blame the team’s postseason loss on Rivers.

The six-time All-Star George had not only been critical of the team’s failure to adjust in the postseason. He also said that Rivers had not maximized his skillset and instead tried to use him as a JJ Redick-like pindown shooter.

Rivers was fired by the Clippers after their playoff collapse and has since become the head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers. He had a bit of personal history with George too, which makes this beef especially compelling.