Herb Simon Rumors
Sources confirmed to ESPN in the wake of that meeting with Simon that Indiana has since invited teams like the Lakers and Boston Celtics to make pitches for George this week in advance of Thursday’s 3 p.m. ET trade deadline.
Nate Taylor: Paul George had dinner with Pacers’ owner Herb Simon during All-Star weekend. I’m told the dinner between Paul George & Herb Simon was celebratory, not George delivering an ultimatum.
So when George met with team owner Herb Simon in recent days and told him that the Hoosier state was still the place for him, how he would love nothing more than to eventually go down as the greatest Pacer of them all, it came with one qualifier. If they can contend for a title. According to a person with knowledge of the meeting who spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation, that is the crossroads that Pacers president Larry Bird now faces. If the Thursday deadline comes and goes and the Pacers roster remains the same, the pressure rises in a significant way.
To the extent that a Louisville franchise would encroach on the territory of the Indiana Pacers and their league-approved 150-mile marketing radius, that risk might seem excessive to Herbert Simon, the NBA’s longest-tenured owner. An NBA source said Thursday that Simon would surely fight expansion in Louisville or Cincinnati, and that his influence on his fellow owners could be hard to overcome. A Pacers spokesman referred questions along those lines to the league.
His ties to Pacers general manager Kevin Pritchard extend to their days in Portland, where Pritchard was GM from 2007-10. “I want to thank Larry, Herb Simon and the Pacers for this opportunity, which is a great opportunity,” McMillan said in the statement. “I’ve been around this franchise three years and understand what the expectations are and look forward to working hard to try to meet them. We have a good team and good base to build from. I’m very anxious to get started.”