Photo Credit: OKC Thunder Wire – USA Today
After the Oklahoma City Thunder dropped game one of the opening series to the Portland Trailblazers, it may be time for the Thunder to make a decision on whether or not Paul George should even keep playing this series. After battling shoulder soreness for weeks, George apparently was unable to even lift his right shoulder a couple days ago.
The shoulder was clearly affecting George’s play today and there has been a noticeable drop in his shooting in the last month of the season. Since March 5th, he has only shot about league average from three (34%). His scoring has dropped subtly as well. This does not bode well for an OKC team that relies heavily on his perimeter shooting to open up driving lanes for Westbrook and Schroeder. With nobody outside George and Jerami Grant shooting above 39% from three for the season, the Thunder are desperate for production for George to replicate is volume shooting from earlier in the season.
Today George shot a meager 8-24 from the field and missed eleven three pointers. If George is unable to carry his typical burden in the scoring department due to his shoulder issues, it may be time to make sure he doesn’t further injure himself and jeopardize his health for next season.