Another feather in the cap of what is becoming a great cap for Paul George. He’s earned an All Star bid, Most Improved Player, and now shows up on the second team all defensive team. Defense is one of those things that a stat sheet won’t always show you the full story, which is why it’s a shame Roy Hibbert isn’t on the list for All Defensive team. He’s the big man in the middle of the Pacers’ defense, but luckily his fellow teammate, Paul George earns some votes. For a guy whose job is it to guard the best player on the team, Paul George definitely earned his stripes for defense. Just ask him about guarding Lebron James. In that first match up with the Heat this regular season, I believe Paul George held his own just fine as the Pacers won against the Heat. Come next round if the Pacers advance, Paul George will have the task of guarding James again. And with it being the playoffs, all eyes will be on that match up. But let’s not get ahead.
Right now, Paul George is doing all he can on Carmelo Anthony as the Knicks have used Anthony in that three spot. George’s length does give him that edge on defense, and he can stay with a guy. He can lock down so much on defense, which is why the Pacers were so effective on the defensive side of the ball. Frank Vogel has said Paul George is the best defender on the team, and that’s why his task is usually to shut down the best player. It was a lot to ask of a guy who just was coming into his own this season. Then consider he was going to have to pick up the scoring load once Danny Granger went down, and you’re telling George to do it even more on BOTH ends of the floor. It’s no wonder Paul George might go through small offensive struggles as he was able to play so well on the defensive side of the ball.
This is a great honor to bestow upon Paul George, and I believe he’ll be right up there in terms of defensive players for the next years as he continues to improve. Hopefully, he’ll get some more votes for top defensive player of the year next year, and we’ll see him on the 1st team list. Those should be two goals to have for George, and with the way he wants to better himself, I believe he’ll aim to do that.