According to ESPN Radio host and studio analyst on the MSG Network Alan Hahn, the Knicks believed that the package they would have had to give up for George was too expensive. The team also reportedly didn’t want to give George a contract extension.
George is under contract for the 2023-24 season and has a player option for the 2024-25 campaign. He could opt out of his deal following the 2023-24 season and become an unrestricted free agent.
Alan Hahn on Knicks: “They had a chance to get Paul George. They said it was too expensive, they don't want to do it. They've already backed outta that. They talked to the Clippers, the Clippers gave what it would cost, then Paul George said 'But I want an extension.’ And they… pic.twitter.com/wamB1M4n1O
— New York Basketball (@NBA_NewYork) July 4, 2023
“They had a chance to get Paul George,” Hahn said. “They said it was too expensive, they don’t want to do it. They’ve already backed outta that. They talked to the Clippers, the Clippers gave what it would cost.
“Then Paul George said, ‘But I want an extension.’ And they said, ‘We’re not doing that.’ And they walked away. So Paul George is off the table. As far as now goes, it’s off the table.”
The Knicks have been rumored to be interested in star players dating back to last offseason when they were a part of the Donovan Mitchell sweepstakes. Mitchell ended up landing with the Cleveland Cavaliers in a trade.
The Knicks got the last laugh, knocking out Cleveland in five games in the first round of the playoffs, but the team was promptly eliminated in the second round by the Miami Heat.
George, an eight-time All-Star, would certainly be an upgrade for the Knicks on the wing. However, it appears the team was unwilling to commit to George for the long term.
That makes sense since the star wing has dealt with several injuries in the past few seasons, and it would also make a deal for George somewhat of a rental since he could opt out of his deal following the 2023-24 season.
The Knicks did make an addition to their roster this offseason, signing guard Donte DiVincenzo to a four-year deal. The team also traded forward Obi Toppin to the Indiana Pacers, leaving a bit of a hole behind Julius Randle in the rotation.
It’s possible the Knicks could reignite trade talks for George, but if there are multiple holdups (the price and the extension), then it seems unlikely the two sides would get a deal completed this offseason.
New York finished the 2022-23 season with the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference. It’s hoping to take a step forward in the 2023-24 campaign.