Paul George Returns To Knock Down His First Shot But Blows A Wide-Open Layup

There’s really no need to revisit the stomach-turning leg injury Paul George suffered last summer during a USA Basketball scrimmage leading up the FIBA World Cup. What’s important is that he returned to the basketball court Sunday as his Indiana Pacers matched up against old rivals the Miami Heat. George came off the bench about midway through the first quarter to a raucous reception from the home crowd at Bankers Life Field House in Indianapolis.

According to NBA.com, George was also slated to receive the honorary dog tags his fellow USA teammates were awarded from Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey, who was in attendance Sunday.

It’s kind of fitting that George returned on Easter Sunday, a day that’s all about rebirth and new beginnings, and things we’re looking good early on as he knocked down his first shot attempt from the field.

But it’s obviously going to take some time before he gets his sea legs back, a fact that became painfully clear on this botched breakaway layup/dunk attempt a little later in the game.

(vine via Anthony Slater)

It’s tempting to speculate that George might have been second-guessing himself about leaping anywhere near the basket stanchion that caused this whole mess to begin with, but it’s probably mostly a matter of just shaking off some of the rust.

The Pacers are currently clinging to a 51-47 lead over the Heat at halftime.