OKC's Paul George reportedly tells Thunder he will opt out, become unrestricted free agent

Oklahoma City forward Paul George will opt out of the final year of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

George reportedly told team officials of his decision to opt out. He has until 11:59 p.m. ET on Friday to formally decline his option.

Though George is opting out of his current deal that would have made him a Thunder through the end of the 2018-19 season, returning to OKC -- the team that traded for him last summer -- appears to still be on the table. George, according to ESPN, remains interested in re-upping with OKC, and even hinted this week he feels he has unfinished business left after a sour ending to last season.

The Lakers are also a contender to land George in unrestricted free agency. According to ESPN, they will receive serious consideration. Philadelphia and Houston intend to pursue him, too.

George was set to make $20.7 million next season had he opted in, and could make more on a new deal this summer. If he chooses, he could sign a five year, $176 million deal with the Thunder. He could also sign a two-year deal with OKC that includes a player option in Year 2, allowing him to kick the free-agency can down the road one year before doing it all over again in 2019, should he choose.

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