Paul George on Los Angeles Lakers interest: ‘It’s definitely been overstated’
All-Star forward Paul George says a reported interest in him playing for the Los Angeles Lakers has been "overstated" and that he is only concerned about winning.
George was traded from the Pacers to the Oklahoma City Thunder last month after spending his first seven seasons with Indiana.
George spoke to SI.com's Lee Jenkins about the Lakers rumors.
“I grew up a Lakers and a Clippers fan,” George says. “I idolized Kobe. There will always be a tie here, a connection here. People saying I want to come here, who doesn’t want to play for their hometown? That’s a dream come true, if you’re a kid growing up on the outskirts of L.A., to be the man in your city. But it’s definitely been overstated."
George reiterates that doesn't care about stats, but wants to be in a good system with a chance a winning titles.
"I’m playing this game to win and build a legacy of winning," he said. "I’ve yet to do that. I’m searching for it. If we get a killer season in Oklahoma, we make the conference finals or upset the Warriors or do something crazy, I’d be dumb to want to leave that.”
George grew up in Palmdale, Calif. and played his college hoops at Fresno State. He said the thoughts of going to Los Angeles are premature.
"It’s too early for L.A.,” he says. “It would have to be a situation where the ball gets rolling and guys are hopping on. This guy commits, that guy commits. ‘Oh s---, now there’s a team forming.’ It has to be like that.
But the same is true for virtually every locale outside of Oakland. I'm in OKC, so hopefully me and Russ do a good enough job and make it to the conference finals and love the situation, why not recruit someone to come build it with us? I’m open in this whole process.”