Star forward Paul George signed a contract extension with the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday.
The extension is for four years and $190 million on top of the $35.4 million that was guaranteed for the 2020-21 season, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The deal is a maximum extension and guarantees George as much as $226 million over the next five years. There is a player option for the 2024-25 season.
Clippers & George Comment on Deal
“This is an important moment for our franchise and our fans, to secure a long-term commitment from one of the premier two-way players in the NBA,” Clippers president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank said in a statement released by the team. “We aspire to create a destination for players, an environment where they can succeed and enjoy their success. We’re delighted by Paul’s pride in representing Clippers fans, honored that he trusts the organization with this chapter of his career, and share in his relentless pursuit of championships. We admire his talent, his dedication and his unwavering allegiance to this region. We’re excited for the opportunity to accomplish our mutual goals together.”
George had said last week that he wanted to retire as a Clipper.
“As a kid growing up in Southern California, I always dreamed of playing in Los Angeles, where my friends and family could come watch me play,” George said about the extension.“I am so grateful to Steve Ballmer, Lawrence Frank, Coach Ty Lue, my teammates, and the entire Clippers organization for believing in me. I am proud to call this my home and look forward to doing my part in helping make the team a tremendous success – both on and off the court – in the years ahead.”
In his first season with the Clippers, George averaged 21.5 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. He struggled in the playoffs on offense, though. His scoring dropped slightly to 20.2 points per game, but his field goal percentage and three-point percentage dropped. George shot just 39.8% from the field during the postseason.
The Clippers were eliminated in the second round by the Denver Nuggets. It wrapped up a disappointing season for the Clippers, who failed to meet expectations. Since then, they’ve made significant moves to avoid a disappointing 2020-21 campaign.
George’s extension is good news for the Clippers because both sides are now committed to each other long term. The Clippers hope to build around George and Kawhi Leonard in the coming seasons. Los Angeles will now shift their focus to signing Kawhi to a new deal, as he can opt-out and hit free agency following this season. If they are able to lock up Leonard, the Clippers will be contenders every season for the foreseeable future.
Leonard is likely to wait out signing his next deal, ensuring himself flexibility if the team again fails to meet expectations.