After the LA Clippers rolled the dice and acquired James Harden last week, there has been much speculation about what he will change for the team. There is no doubt he adds a different level of star power to the Clippers, but questions remain about whether the fit will be right in the long-term.
One of the most prominent current NBA players in the media game is Paul George, who went on his podcast, Podcast P with Paul George (Presented by Wave Sports + Entertainment), this week and shared his thoughts on the whole situation. George revealed a key conversation between the players and Head Coach Tyronn Lue had already taken place.
In their discussion, they emphasized the need for sacrifices on this team going forward. The players are collectively aware of what they have each achieved individually in their careers. But they recognized the need to buy into a greater goal going forward.
Clippers players and coaches agree on their collective goal
“The fact of the matter is, all four of us are superstars, been superstars, great players,” said George. “But there’s gotta be sacrifices, right? So that was the main conversation, addressing the elephant in the room.”
We already know that one of the greatest hurdles this team will have to cross this year involves chemistry. All three of Leonard, Westbrook and Harden have won either a regular season or Finals MVP, so each have reached some of the highest individual achievements in the sport. Having been a perennial All-NBA team member and MVP candidate, Paul George is in the same category.
The fact that they are all going into the season with this level of self-awareness is encouraging. During their conversation, Ty Lue reiterated their point and reassured them he was on the same page as well.
“There’s one basketball, y’all are going to have to figure out how to play on the floor and space and give each other opportunities,” said Lue. “But if you commit to that, I’ll lead you where you need to go. I just need you to commit to it being sacrifices and it being one mission and one goal.”
This whole discussion is very similar to James Harden’s comments about wanting to sacrifice for those around him in order to reach the ultimate goal of winning a championship. Right now, everyone within the Clippers locker room appears to be saying the right things and approaching with the right mindset. Now, it just has to translate onto the court.