George is one of the top defenders in the league, but he has a history of becoming victim to game-winners.
Paul George becoming a top player in the NBA
George started his career with the Indiana Pacers. In his rookie year during the 2010-11 season, he mostly came off the bench and averaged 7.8 points and 3.7 rebounds per game. He was named to the All-Rookie Second Team. The next season he became a starter, and his production improved as he averaged 12.1 points, 5.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 1.6 rebounds per game. George started to come into his own during his third season in the league. He had a breakout season for the Pacers. During the 2012-13 season, he was named the Most Improved Player of the Year after averaging 17.4 points, 7.6 rebounds, 4.1 assists, and 1.8 steals per game. George also made the All-Star team for the first time and was named to the All-Defensive Team and All-NBA Team.
George became the top player on the Pacers’ team, and they were one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference. He spent his first seven seasons in Indiana and, during that time, had a lot of success becoming one of the best players in the Eastern Conference. In July of 2017, the Pacers traded George to the Oklahoma City Thunder. It was a big blow for Pacers fans seeing George leave because he helped turn the Pacers into a contending team in the East. George spent two years in Oklahoma City and had one of the best seasons of his career during the 2018-19 season.
During that season, he averaged 28 points, 8.2 rebounds, 4.1 assists, and 2.2 steals. All of those numbers were career-highs for George.
Paul George teaming up with Kawhi Leonard out west
When Anthony Davis joined the LA Lakers, the Clippers made some moves of their own. George and Leonard decided to join the Clippers after Leonard won an NBA championship with the Toronto Raptors. Two teams in LA could compete for a title during the 2019-20 season. When George joined the Clippers, he missed the first eleven games due to a shoulder injury. In his Clippers debut, he dropped 33 points against the New Orleans Pelicans.
Having George and Leonard on the same team gives the Clippers a high-level offense and defense. Both players are two of the best two-way players in the league. In 45 games with the Clippers, George is averaging 21.4 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 1.4 steals. The Clippers are the No. 2 team in the west behind the Lakers, and George will play a significant part in the team’s playoff success.
Even though he’s one of the top defenders, Paul George is a victim of numerous game-winners
It’s well-known that George is one of the top defenders in the league. But he has a history of being the player who gets the game-winning shot or lay-up on. In the Clippers’ recent game against the Phoenix Suns, Devin Booker hit the game-winner, and guess who it was on? That’s right, and it was George.
Let’s take it back to the 2019 NBA playoffs when the Portland Trail Blazers took on the Thunder. It was Game 5 of the first round, and Portland needed a win to clinch the series. With the game tied, Damian Lillard had the ball with just seconds left on the clock while George was guarding him. As Lillard got the shot off over George’s outstretched hand, Lillard made the shot and sent the Thunder home. This has happened multiple times throughout George’s career, and the thing is that he plays great defense on most of the plays. He just finds himself on the wrong end during some games.