The Golden State Warriors are looking to add more firepower to their already talented lineup next summer when a certain All-Star named Paul George hits the free agency market. After winning their second NBA championship in three years, the Dubs front office appears to be cooking up another master plan to reload their roster yet again.

The PG13 master-plan

In a podcast session, NBA insiders Tim Kawakami and Marcus Thompson of the Athletics believe Warriors general manager Joe Lacob are far from done regarding adding another elite talent. George, who will become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2018, is looking like the next target for the executive.

“I think Joe Lacob is going to try to find a way to get Paul George. I don’t know how that would happen, but I didn’t know how it was going to happen when they were – three years ago when they said they were going after Durant. Well, they didn’t say it. But they might have whispered it,” per Kawakami.

This isn’t the first time the Warriors were linked to George. Sometime in June, the Pacers reportedly offered George, who then announced his decision to leave Pacers after this coming season, to the Warriors in exchange for two-way star Klay Thompson. Golden State rebuffed the trade proposal, forcing Indiana to find another suitor that turned out to be the Oklahoma City Thunder (with Domantas Sabonis and Victor Oladipo as trade compensations).

Reloading never stops

Ben Rohrback of Ball Don’t Lie of Yahoo Sports believes Kawakami’s hypothetic idea of Warriors salvaging another All-Star caliber player is not impossible. In fact, the Yahoo NBA analyst discussed several methods on how the Warriors would pull off such feat. The first way is through a trade.

Rohrback thinks the Warriors could get George if they convince the Thunder to accept a trade package consists of Andre Iguodala ($16 million) and Shaun Livingston ($8.3 million) and $8.2 million in non-guaranteed contracts – a strategy similar to the coup pulled off by Rockets GM Daryl Morey to acquire Chris Paul.

Of course, George has to exercise his player’s option for the 2018-19 season ($20.7 million) to make it all happen.

Then, there’s the possibility of a sign-and-trade deal. Again, the Warriors should get the Thunder on board first before this transaction happens. In this scenario, Golden State will send Iguodala, Livingston, and some non-guaranteed contracts to the Thunder, renounce Durant’s early bird and absorb George’s max contract starting at $30.6 million.

After completing George’s acquisition, they can now re-sign Durant on another discounted contract, leaving them with a starting five of Curry, Thompson, George Durant and Green without exceeding the $130 million payroll apron.

Lastly, the Warriors could acquire George if he opts out of his current deal and accepts a discounted contract. By doing so, PG13 will be leaving $30.6 million on the table to sign a veteran minimum contract that pays him $2.2 million or a mid-level exception of around $5.3 million. It’s insane but still within the realm of possibility.


It’s already a tight squeeze just for the Warriors to acquire George without breaching the current CBA. However, the biggest roadblock to the Super Team is the star’s quench to become the man of his own team.

Next summer, the Lakers are expected to be the no.1 destination for George for the reason that it provides him the stage to be the focal point of the team. Something the Warriors couldn’t offer to him.