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Wizards exploring trade for Pacers superstar Paul George, report says

Wizards exploring trade for Pacers superstar Paul George, report says

With the news Paul George plans to leave the Pacers next offseason via free agency, rumors of Indiana trading him have been heating up. Teams like the Celtics and Cavs have already been linked. According to a new report, don't count out the Wizards.

Here is what David Aldridge wrote on NBA.com Monday morning:

"The Wizards are looking for a way to make a George deal happen. They don’t have a player of [Kevin] Love’s caliber to put in a deal; they’re not moving Bradley Beal after the 23-year-old just had his best NBA season. Playing alongside Washington’s backcourt of Beal and John Wall, after all, would be the selling point for George in D.C."

[RELATED: Pacers may have no choice but to trade Paul George]

Aldridge went on to say that Otto Porter could be a trade chip, but he would have to agree to a sign-and-trade and that would require him taking less money thanks to the new CBA. If the Wizards do not trade Beal, then Porter and others like Markieff Morris, Marcin Gortat and Kelly Oubre, Jr. will likely come up in talks.

Trading for George does have an inherent risk given he can opt out of his deal next summer and has indicated he wants to join the Lakers. Any team that trades for him would probably want a guarantee he will re-sign. But a trio of George, Wall and Beal would rank up there with the best in the NBA. That could make them favorites in the East.

Stay tuned.

[RELATED: Celtics-Sixers trade should have big effect on East]

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With Markelle Fultz and Ben Simmons set to debut, John Wall and Bradley Beal recall their early days

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USA Today Sports Images

With Markelle Fultz and Ben Simmons set to debut, John Wall and Bradley Beal recall their early days

The Philadelphia 76ers will have two No. 1 overall picks make their NBA debuts on Wednesday night in Markelle Fultz (2017) and Ben Simmons (2016). They are in for a challenge with the Wizards, one of the best teams in basketball, and with guards John Wall and Bradley Beal.

Wall and Beal know that challenge well. They were both top draft picks in their own right, Wall the first pick in 2010 and Beal the third pick in 2012. They can recall in specifics their first games in the NBA and how humbling they were.

"My first game, I was going against Dwight Howard. It was fun," Wall said. "There was a lot of pressure. There were a lot of people talking."

[RELATED: 2017 NBA POWER RANKINGS]

It's often said that the point guard position is as deep as it's ever been nowadays. The last three MVP awards have gone to point guards, for instance.

There were some good ones back in 2010, too.

"I remember in a five-game span I played like [Rajon] Rondo, Derrick Rose here and then I went out west and played Steve Nash, Chris Paul and Russell [Westbrook]," Wall said. "I don't think it's gotten any harder than it was back then in 2010 with those five guys. You kind of understand what those guys are about when you get to see it firsthand and play against them."

Beal vividly remembers going up against the LeBron James-led Miami Heat as a 19-year-old. It wasn't easy.

"It was the Heat when they had [Dwyane Wade] and LeBron on the same team. That's when D-Wade was electrifying. He still had his quickness. He was strong as I don't know what and I was a baby at that time," he said.

"For me, it was like I was in awe because those are the guys I grew up watching and I was a fan of. Now I'm playing against them and I can't be a fan of them. It was amazing to play against them, but also an eye-opener like, I need to get better."

Now it's Fultz and Simmons' turn to see what matching up with NBA superstars is like and don't expect Wall or Beal to take it easy on them.

"I'm a competitive person, so I'm not going to back down from any challenge," Wall said.

[RELATED: WIZARDS AND SIXERS SET TO OPEN SEASON]

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Wizards Tipoff podcast, Ep. 45 - Season preview with over/unders and bold predictions

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NBC Sports Washington

Wizards Tipoff podcast, Ep. 45 - Season preview with over/unders and bold predictions

On the latest episode of the Wizards Tipoff podcast presented by Greenberg and Bederman personal injury lawyers, Chase Hughes and Chris Miller previewed the 2017-18 Wizards regular season with over/unders, biggest questions and bold predictions.

NBC Sports Philly Sixers Insider Jessica Camerato also joined the show to preview the first game between the Wizards and Sixers.

You can listen to the episode right here:

You can download the podcast on Apple Podcasts right here and on Google Play. If you like the show please tell your friends!

[RELATED: 10 QUESTIONS WITH BRADLEY BEAL]