The Boston Celtics have emerged as the prime candidate to trade for All-Star small forward Paul George. According to A. Sherrod Blakely of Comcast Sportsnet, the Celtics may have a better chance of landing the superstar now that Larry Bird has already stepped down as the Indiana Pacers' general manager.
Blakely pointed out that George's future becomes a lot gloomier following the Pacers' first-round exit at the hands of the Cleveland Cavaliers and the sudden resignation of Bird as the Pacers' top front-office decision-maker.
The analyst stressed that he has no clues about the direction the Pacers are taking, but one thing he is sure about: George is up for grabs this coming summer.
"And while it's unclear exactly what it means to the Celtics and their pursuit this summer of Indiana All-Star Paul George, it does add an element of uncertainty as to the direction of the Pacers franchise. At this point, that's a good thing for the Celtics because Bird had made it clear both to the Celtics and to league sources that he was not interested in moving George anytime soon."
Meanwhile, Al Horford could have been a Wizard, if not with the Celtics. John Wall reminisced the time when he and Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld to Atlanta in an attempt to snag Horford off the free-agency market. According to Wall, they had a nice meeting with Horford, but the All-Star big man eventually decided to play in Boston.
"Me and him had a great conversation," Wall recalled in an interview with J. Michael of CSNMidAtlantic. "He told me it was down to [us], them and I think Houston. He made his final decision after that, you've got to move on. It would've been great to have him on our team, but he's with the Celtics.
The Wizards and the Celtics are set to start their best-of-seven Eastern Conference semis series on Sunday at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.