Reports: Pacers ask NBA to investigate Lakers for tampering in pursuit of Paul George

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Paul George #13 of the Indiana Pacers dribbles the ball as Kyle Lowry #7 of the Toronto Raptors defends in the first half of Game Five of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at the Air Canada Centre on April 26, 2016 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Indiana Pacers have reportedly asked the NBA to launch an investigation into the Los Angeles Lakers for allegedly tampering in their pursuit of Paul George, according to multiple reports.

Lakers Owner Jeanie Buss, General Manager Rob Pelinka and President Magic Johnson have been contacted by an independent investigator and have been asked to give potential correspondence between them and George, his agent and his parents.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski with ESPN, the Pacers filed tampering charges on speculation that there was impermissible contact between Magic Johnson and George.

 

Back in June, the cat was let out of the bag that George prefers to end up playing in Los Angeles after his agent informed the Pacers that he was leaving town after this season.

Many conspiracy theorists around the area were already questioning the tampering after Magic Johnson tweeted, “God is so good!” the day George informed the Pacers he was going to leave town.

According to article 35 of the NBA’s Constitution and Bylaws, “No person may, directly or indirectly, entice, induce, persuade or attempt to entice, induce or persuade any Coach, Trainer, General Manager or any other person who is under contract to any other Member of the Association to enter into negotiations for or relating to his services or negotiate or contract for such services or  otherwise interfere with any such employer-employee relationship of
any other Member of the Association.”

It will be interested to see what comes of this. George has repeatedly told media in Oklahoma City he is very excited to play with Russell Westbrook and would be potentially open to signing a long-term deal.

The NBA released a statement this afternoon with saying the following statement:

“At the request of the Indiana Pacers, the NBA opened an investigation into alleged tampering by the Los Angeles Lakers. The indepetent investigation is being conducted by the law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. The Lakers have been cooperative and, at this point, no finding have been made. We have asked both teams to refrain from commenting while the investigation is ongoing.”