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Thunder star guard Russell Westbrook reportedly threw a party Saturday night in Oklahoma City, perhaps not coincidentally the same night potential free agent swingman Paul George was coming to town.

George previously stated that he has a desire to move back to his hometown of L.A. but that view may have softened after spending a year in Oklahoma City. While there was a ton of speculation about George heading home to play for the Los Angeles Lakers, Magic Johnson and company dodged a bullet by not bringing PG to LA.

Any other team could only offer George the maximum over a four-year period, meaning he could risk losing out on $46m in guaranteed cash later down the line.

George forced his way out of IN previous year by telling the Pacers he planned to become a free agent this summer and sign with the Lakers.

With George in the fold, the Thunder have $147 million committed to 10 players.

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While the reason for the party wasn't clear, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski pointed to something else going on in Oklahoma City on Friday. Oklahoma City could face the largest tax bill in National Basketball Association history, according to ESPN.

Unless another team surpasses the Thunder this season (which is possible, given where the league's finances are going) that would easily make Oklahoma City the most expensive team in National Basketball Association history. That deal would save the Thunder more than $30 million in salary and taxes this season, but add about $20 million in 2019-20 salary. He simply isn't the kind of player you give that kind of money to. Now, it appears as though George opted to sign a long-term deal with the organization.

He broke out in his third season with the Pacers, averaging 17.6 points, 7.6 rebounds and 4.1 assists while helping the Pacers become one of the best defenses in the association.

The hope here is that Oklahoma City is able to somehow overcome last season's struggles.


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