Just a few minutes after Paul George sat down at his podium for NBA All-Star media day, a robust chant of "We want Paul! We want Paul!'' broke out among the fans sitting in bleachers in the back of the convention hall.
"It makes you feel great,'' the Oklahoma City Thunder All-Star said. "I love it. It's not to say that I don't. I felt the energy. I know where the love is.''
George grew up in Palmdale, about 65 miles from Staples Center, where the All-Star Game will be played Sunday night.
"It feels good to be welcome. I think anybody would want to be wanted and be welcomed,'' he said.
The fans, of course, want George to play with the Lakers. He said he's happy with the Thunder, but with free agency looming, coming to Los Angeles is a big possibility.
Asked if he knows what he's going to do this summer, he said: "I don't.''
He added: "I know what I feel is best, but it's a long way until the end of the season.''
But according to the Los Angeles Times, when teammate Russell Westbrook heard the "We want Paul!" chants, he turned to the fans and said, "Paul ain't goin' nowhere! It's over for that!"
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.