Paul George has a massive responsibility on his shoulders without Kawhi Leonard this season. George knows what he has to do, and fully accepts the challenge.
"I think the biggest thing you take away from being the number one guy is just how to control the game," Paul George said. "That's the only thing I can apply being the number one guy. I mean, I've seen it all from doubles, traps. You name it, I've seen it."
A season ago, Paul George had a completely different mindset entering the season. He entered the 2020-21 season with a massive chip on his shoulder after what happened against the Denver Nuggets in the playoffs. This season, George has a much clearer mindset after helping carry the Clippers to their first-ever Western Conference Finals appearance.
"Now this year there's a lot of consistency, just in my life alone, my approach," Paul George said. "There's a lot of consistency. I know what I'm doing. I know what I'm getting into. I know what I'm facing. So it's night and day, night and day. I feel like I'm a lot more clear-headed, a lot more focused, and just sharper coming into the situation."
While the Clippers say they're coming into the season with the mindset to win, it's realistically hard to have expectations about this season. One thing fans should hope for is that the team competes. After what we've seen during last year's playoffs, that shouldn't be a problem.
"Again, I can't reiterate any more than saying I'm just ready," George said. "I'm ready for this in whatever capacity it is. I'm ready for the challenge."