Paul George: ‘I’m Back in That Indy Mindset’ with Kawhi Leonard Injured for Clippers
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Kawhi Leonard’s misfortune may have unlocked a version of Paul George that hasn’t been seen on the court in years.
Speaking to reporters after the Los Angeles Clippers’ 119-111 win over the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night, George said he’s “back in that Indy mindset.”
“I’ve been in Indiana, where I had to lead a franchise. The beauty here is that I get to do that with one of the best of the world in Kawhi,” George added.
George was a key player for the Indiana Pacers early in his career when the franchise had a rivalry with the Miami Heat during their run with LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade.
George dropped 37 points in 45 minutes in Game 5 of the 2014 Eastern Conference Finals to help the Pacers win 93-90 to keep the series going for one more game.
The Clippers received bad news prior to Wednesday’s Game 5 against the Jazz when they announced Leonard will be out indefinitely with a sprained right knee.
Per Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium, the Clippers are concerned about a possible ACL injury to Leonard.
In his first playoff game as a Clipper without Leonard at his side, George played arguably his best game with the franchise. The seven-time All-Star scored 37 points on 12-of-22 shooting and grabbed 16 rebounds in 40 minutes.
If Leonard is unable to return this postseason, Los Angeles will need the best version of George to show up every game if it wants to win a championship.
The Clippers have won three straight games over the Jazz and can close out the series in Game 6 at the Staples Center on Friday night at 10 p.m. ET.
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