Over recent years, Paul George has become one of the most picked on players in the NBA. He’s normally one of the better players in the league, but when he struggles, fans are ready to pounce. This year’s playoff run hasn’t been perfect but he’s silencing a lot of critics.
With the Los Angeles Clippers facing elimination against the Phoenix Suns on Monday, George put together arguably his best playoff performance ever. He scored 41 points on 75% shooting and grabbed 13 rebounds en route to a 116-102 win. George has dealt with a number of bad injuries throughout his career, including undergoing shoulder surgery prior to last season.
Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James recently said that he would never be 100% again in his career due to the ankle injury he suffered during the season. George sees some similarities with his situation.
“It’s just been tough,” Paul George said after Monday’s win. “It’s been a process. I hear LeBron say he’s not 100 percent and won’t ever be 100 percent again. I thought about it, like, man, that was stripped from me as well. It’s tough. I definitely lost some things. Even with the shoulder surgeries, I lost a little bit.”
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Can George Lead Clippers to NBA Finals?
When Kawhi Leonard went down for the Clippers in the second round of the playoffs against the Utah Jazz, everybody thought the team was done. He’s been their best player and was playing extremely well in the playoffs. Considering George’s noted playoff struggles, very few truly believed that Los Angeles could be a threat to the Suns.
However, the Clippers keep fighting. They’re still down 3-2 in the series but anything is possible with this team. At this point, you can’t count them out. Head coach Ty Lue has done an excellent job of adjusting as the series goes on. That said, George can still revert back to his previous struggles as we saw in Game 4 when he missed two free throws that may have sealed the game for the Clippers.
DeMarcus Cousins Calls out George Haters
As previously noted, George has his fair share of haters who love to hit him whenever he struggles. Clippers teammate DeMarcus Cousins is tired of seeing the star take such a beating on social media and called out his hater.
“I don’t know where this trolling bulls*** has come from where the internet controls the narratives about these players,” Cousins said after the game. “It’s becoming foolish, man. Like I said earlier in the year, [George is] one of the most special players to ever lace his shoes up.
“Give this dude his flowers, man. I don’t understand the slander. It’s becoming quite silly now. Respect these players, man. Respect these greats.”
Just a couple of seasons ago, George finished third in MVP voting. He’s been overshadowed by Leonard since joining the Clippers but he’s still one of the better players in the NBA.