76ers Rumors: Surprise team emerges as dark horse for Paul George

The Philadelphia 76ers are widely believed to be the frontrunners to sign Paul George, but this surprise team is rumored to be a dark horse to snag the All-Star.
76ers, Paul George
76ers, Paul George / Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

With a pretty sizeable cap space sitting for spending, the Philadelphia 76ers are widely believed to be the frontrunners to sign Paul George in free agency assuming that he tests the waters. The franchise has made it abundantly clear that it does intend to make a move for the All-Star, and the Clippers’ uncertainty direction and contract-wise fleshes it out even more.

Landing George, however, would be tricky. The 34-year-old is understandably in the hunt for a max contract for his last big payday, and while the 76ers can definitely give him that outright, there are tangible risks. Nevertheless, recent reports have bared that the bidding war for George may not just be a two-team race this summer.

The 76ers are rumored to have a new rival for Paul George in free agency

According to ESPN Insider Ramona Shelburne, both the 76ers and the Orlando Magic have zeroed in on George as their prime target in free agency. With the Clippers not appearing too resolute about handing him a max contract, the All-Star wing will hit free agency this offseason in all likelihood.

Orlando, which is fresh off a Game 7 loss that still punctuated their pretty impressive season, could be on the lookout to accelerate their youth movement around Paolo Banchero and Franz Wagner. They already tout a potent defense, but they clearly need a lot more boost on the scoring end to truly contend in the Eastern Conference.

George, who can play both forward positions as well as shooting guard, would be a perfect fit for their aggressive defense and unique roster composition. Even better, his skillset should perfectly fit in next to the Magic’s star duo, as he’s still one of the best high-volume catch-and-shoot creators in the association who can create his own shot when needed.

Clearly, Philadelphia will have to be more aggressive in their missive to land George, though the 76ers do have the advantage of giving him the more immediate shot at winning the championship, something that has been elusive for him in his hometown. Otherwise, the front office will have to get creative to build a better roster for the following seasons.

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