Paul George scored 14 points in the Clippers’ 119 to 117 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves last night, but it was George’s actions off the court that got everyone’s attention.
“Kawhi is the number one. And I am totally fine with that,” said George after his team’s loss. “I think I try to complement him with being able to take the load off of him.”
George and Leonard have seen limited action on the court together since George joined the Clippers in 2020.
“Everybody says, ‘Kawhi [and] you are one and one [or] one-A, one-B.’ I’ll publicly say, I’m the two. Kawhi’s the one. I’m the two. So that part we nipped in the bud. Like there’s no ego when it comes to that.”
George played the role of number one with Leonard on the bench last season, recovering from injury.
But after multiple disappointing seasons, the Clippers are once again being considered title favorites.
“We’re both unselfish,” Leonard said. “My 12th year, his 13th year … we’ve been through this before. So, I feel like just having those years under our belt and, obviously, like I said, we have a genuine relationship, and it just carries over.”
“I believe on any night of what I am capable of. But I feel my job is to make everybody better. That is what I try to do when I am on the floor. Just make the game easy for everybody, whether it is creating or just being aggressive … and making reads off of that.
Los Angeles added veteran guard John Wall from Houston during the offseason after Wall was left sitting on the bench in favor of developing the Rockets’ young talent.
“I think we will go a long ways if everybody just knows their role and what we bring to the table. Everything else is easy; we just roll the ball out, and we get after it,” said George.
George has his second-most productive season points-wise last year, averaging 24.3 points in Leonard’s absence.