INDEPENDENCE, OHIO - Of all of the comments Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert made during his 40-minute press conference on Wednesday, perhaps the most noteworthy was one that wasn't even about his own team.
At least not directly.
Gilbert took the podium on Wednesday for the first time this offseason to introduce Koby Altman as the Cavs' new general manager. The conversation, however, quickly turned to what has seemed to be a tumultuous offseason for the three-time defending Eastern Conference champions, which has included the departure of former general manager David Griffin and a reported trade request from star point guard Kyrie Irving.
Among the Cavs' apparent missteps this offseason was a failed pursuit of forward Paul George, who the Indiana Pacers traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder on June 30. In return for the 4-time All-Star, the Pacers received guard Victor Oladipo and forward Domantas Sabonis
Asked specifically about Cleveland's unsuccessful attempts to trade for George, Altman did his best to deflect. Gilbert, however, couldn't help himself.
"I will say Indiana could have done better than they did," Gilbert said.
Gilbert's comment implied that he has firsthand knowledge of other offers the Pacers received for George, including the Cavs' proposed packages. According to ESPN, Cleveland had agreed in principle to a three-way deal with Indiana, which would have sent Cavs All-Star forward Kevin Love to the Denver Nuggets and George to Cleveland.
Per the report, the deal fell apart when Pacers, who would have received Denver wing Gary Harris and other pieces in the trade, backed out.
"That's been well publicized. I don't want to talk about that," Altman said. "We're actively trying to get better."
According to their other comments on Wednesday, the Cavs feel they have done just that with the acquisitions of Derrick Rose, Jeff Greene, Cedi Osman and Jose Calderon.
But thanks to Gilbert's jab, we now have confirmation that another attempt for the Cavs to improve this offseason fell through.
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