Report: LeBron James and Paul George were possibly minutes away from being teammates on Cavs in 2017

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Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

NBA stars LeBron James and Paul George have crossed paths many times during their careers, but they’ve never been teammates in the league.

However, in 2017, the two players were potentially “minutes away” from being teammates, according to a new report. It sounds like the Cleveland Cavaliers came extremely close to trading for George.

“For a brief period, the teams thought they’d agreed on terms,” wrote ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. “The [Denver] Nuggets would’ve received [Kevin] Love, the [Indiana] Pacers would’ve gotten prospect players including Gary Harris as well as multiple picks and the Cavs would’ve gotten George. A conference call was set up to finalize the terms, and George and James were potentially minutes away from being teammates, team sources said.

“But for various reasons, the deal fell apart when it came to getting final ownership approvals, which isn’t unusual on multiteam complex trades. A few days later, George was traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Domantas Sabonis and Victor Oladipo. James never extended his contract, and several weeks later, [Kyrie] Irving asked for a trade out of Cleveland.”

While James’ second stint with the Cavs produced an unforgettable NBA title in 2016, it’s possible that he would have led the organization to another championship had the trade for George gone through.

George was a phenomenal two-way player then and still is now. He has earned seven All-Star selections, six All-NBA nods and four All-Defensive team honors.

The former first-round pick has career averages of 20.5 points, 6.4 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game. He currently plays in the same city as James, as George is with the Los Angeles Clippers, and James is with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Fans can only speculate about what George would have accomplished in a Cavs uniform.

It’s interesting to learn that Love was potentially minutes away from seeing his time with Cleveland come to an end, especially since he’s a major part of today’s Cavs. The veteran has seemingly found new life in his NBA career ever since he took on a bench role with Cleveland.

While plenty of Cavs fans surely wish the team had indeed traded for George, most folks in Cleveland are likely very happy with the current state of the organization. The Cavs are 8-2 this season and look like one of the best teams in the league. Moreover, their success seems sustainable for years to come.

As for James and George, they’re both looking to win the Western Conference this season and earn a trip to the NBA Finals. James’ Lakers aren’t in good shape so far. On the other hand, George’s Clippers have the potential to do some serious damage if they’re healthy.

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Jason has covered the NBA for multiple years and is very excited about the future of the Cleveland Cavaliers.