The 2018 off-season will be full of surprise signings and a lot of action. Paul George is expected to leave the Oklahoma City Thunder but his landing spots are uncertain. Is it possible for the Brooklyn Nets to land him?
Paul George will be one of the most popular free-agents this off-season. He is expected to sign with his hometown team the Los Angeles Lakers on a max-contract deal, but speculations are still in the air.
The realistic landing spots for George are the Lakers or re-signing with the Oklahoma City Thunder. At this point however, anything possible and teams will soon start to take action. One team that can take action and potentially land the five time all-star: the Brooklyn Nets.
The Brooklyn Nets are in desperate need for a big market player. If Brooklyn were aiming to land George, they would have to do a lot of work.
Brooklyn approximately have $17 million in cap-space this off-season. That is certainly not enough to land the 28-year-old forward. Yet with a few moves, they can nearly double that number.
Moving Jeremy Lin will be a big cap-space boost for Brooklyn. Lin, who missed all but the season opener last year is expected to make $12.5 million during the 2018-2019 season. If Brooklyn were to trade Lin, it would increase cap-space to just under $30 million.
Losing Lin would not be a huge hit either for Brooklyn. The Nets are filled with young guards and can easily afford to trade the 29-year-old. It would be a smart move for Brooklyn to make.
Trading Timofey Mozgov will be a near impossible move for the Brooklyn Nets. The Russian big man did not come close to his expectations this past season. Brooklyn needs to get rid of him but buying out his contract is not an option. Mozgov is one of the highest paid players on the Nets roster and a huge cap-space eater.
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What can Brooklyn do with him? According to Frank Urbina of Hoopshype, the Nets can work with his contract and free up more cap-space. If they stretch Timofey Mozgov’s albatross of a contract (between July 1 and August 31) and get the bulk of it off their books, their cap number could grow even further to $39.0 million.
Now with just under $40 million in space, Brooklyn landing George is becomes more realistic.
George has not made it clear if he want to base his signing off money or winning. One thing that’s certain is he wants to play in a big market. The Nets are not the biggest NBA market team in New York City, the New York Knicks are. However if Brooklyn signs George, the Nets would likely take that right from the Knicks. George alone would likely become NYC’s marquee player and could make even more money.
It is unlikely Brooklyn land the all-star forward, but it’s not impossible. Nets General Manager Sean Marks will have to make several previous moves in order to pursue George.