10 NBA players who turned their back on their franchises

Kawhi Leonard, Paul George
Kawhi Leonard, Paul George / Harry How/GettyImages
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5) Paul George

Although Paul George didn't demand to be traded from the Indiana Pacers, it became clear that he was unlikely to re-sign after his contract was up. Instead of waiting and hoping for him to change his mind, the Pacers traded George in the summer of 2017 to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis.

At the time, that seemed like a lopsided deal in the Thunder's favor, but it has actually worked out well for all sides involved. The Pacers got an all-NBA year out of Oladipo and two all-star appearances out of Sabonis.

They later flipped Sabonis for Tyrese Haliburton, who is a bona fide star. Meanwhile, the Thunder had a great two years with George but flipped him five first-round picks as well as Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who's also become a superstar. As for George, he is now playing for the Los Angeles Clippers, but Pacers fans may still have some hurt feelings that he didn't want to play out his career in Indiana.

Even still, he helped lead them to three deep playoff runs, including consecutive Eastern Conference Finals appearances. There could also be several more in the Pacers' future, with Haliburton as their best player. George may have ultimately left but the Pacers should feel fortunate that he wanted out.