Indiana Pacers: 30 greatest players in franchise history

(Photo by Andy Hayt/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Hayt/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
(Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images) /

5. Paul George

Around Indianapolis, the name “Paul George” can still bring some negative reactions out of the locals. He was a player the entire city rallied around as he navigated the waters of becoming a budding NBA star before he eventually made his intentions to leave the team in free agency clear, causing the front office to ship him to OKC for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis. It was a tough situation.

But for now, throw all of that stuff out of the window.

The bottom line is that Paul George is without a doubt one of the greatest Indiana Pacers of all time. And sure, he’ll never climb to the very top of this list like he could have if he would have stuck around, but he did enough in his 7 seasons with the team to earn a top 5 spot.

When he was drafted, George was an incredibly raw talent, and seemed to be moderately redundant with Danny Granger’s role on the team. However, PG worked hard to carve out a spot for himself in the rotation before turning into one of the most explosive and dangerous two-way threats in the Association. He regularly had highlight-reel dunks on offense and could lock down literally almost anyone on defense.

George was a four-time All-Star with Indy. He also won the Most Improved Player award in 2012-2013, made 3 All-NBA third teams, an All-Defensive first team (and 2 second teams), and the All-Rookie second team. Clearly, PG’s career was off to an incredible start before he was traded away right as he was entering the prime of his career. The sky would’ve been the limit for Paul George in Indiana.