— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) September 24, 2017
George says the Thunder’s new Big Three has “something to prove” heading into their first season together.
PG and Russell Westbrook heavily recruited Melo to OKC this summer.
Per USA Today:
“Well Russ and Melo, they’ve had a relationship far longer and way before me and Melo had a relationship,” George said. “Those two have been on USA teams, and then when I got the chance to play with Melo on the USA team. I expressed (and) he expressed how much we wanted to play alongside each other in an NBA uniform. And then when we both were presented this opportunity this summer, and knowing Melo wanted to opt out and wanted to move on, we’ve connected. We talked, and he expressed again – ‘Hey, I would love to come join you guys and be a part of what you guys have got going there.’ And then from there, it’s a no-brainer. We run with it, and it came to life.”
For George, who spent his first seven NBA seasons with the Pacers and was routinely open about his frustration with their inability to surround him with star talent, this is a welcome change of pace.
“I’m real excited,” he said. “It just goes to show how a small market can stay aggressive in the trade place, and can really do whatever it needs to do for the players’ sake to give them the best chance to win, man. It’s pretty impressive that Oklahoma has now three superstars, and gave this state a legitimate chance to win a championship.
“The most beautiful thing about it is (that) this organization (lets) all their players know what’s going on. There’s nothing under the table. There’s nothing hidden since I’ve been here so far. So I was aware of what was going on. I was extremely happy. I was pushing for this opportunity to play with (Anthony). I’m extremely happy…The first year I get here, we already have three superstars on the team. It just goes to show what’s possible with different organizations.”