Stats (as of 3/10): 23.7 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 5.4 APG, 0.5 BPG, 1.1 SPG, 49.9 FG%, 45.0 3PT%, 88.8 FT%, 64.2 TS%
Paul George is on a revenge tour. It’s still unclear what the final destination of this tour will be, and whether it will be one of those tours that you keep the T-shirt from for the rest of your life, but one thing is for certain: he’s having an excellent season.
He’s not MVP-level OKC PG, but he doesn’t need to be. As a second option, he’s been ungodly efficient. There are only six players in the league that have a higher true shooting percentage than George that also have a usage rate of 25% or higher: Zach LaVine, Nikola Jokic, Kevin Durant, Zion Williamson and Stephen Curry—fairly elite company.
George has also become an above-average playmaker for his position. He’s averaging a career-high 5.4 assists per game, and has looked more than competent finding shooters off of his prized pick-and-roll possessions.
Defensively, George is still a lengthy wing that can switch onto most players shorter than 6’10. While it is strange that the Clippers are middle of the pack defensively (15th in the league) despite having four players in their starting lineup that have made multiple All-Defensive teams throughout their career, the blame cannot fall solely on George. Similar to his co-star Kawhi Leonard, it is not a question if George can turn it on defensively in the postseason and make life hard for any team’s best offensive wing.
It’s been said a million times, but George will continue to be hunted by his playoff demons until he proves the doubters wrong in said playoffs. But until then, the revenge tour continues.
Halfway Point Grade: A