Paul George bluntly criticizes teammates in postgame press conference

Paul George bluntly criticizes teammates in postgame press conference

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iStock/Thinkstock(CLEVELAND) — Following the Indiana Pacers 117-111 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers Monday night, Pacers star Paul George took aim at teammates Lance Stephenson and Myles Turner while answering questions from reporters.

George said of Stephenson:

“He’s got to learn to control himself and be in the moment. Lance, in our locker room, is looked upon as a leader. His body language has to improve — just for the team. We all know that Lance is an emotional guy. A lot of it is his heart and his competitiveness. That emotion comes out of him. He’s got to channel that toward making effort plays on the court and doing whatever he needs for us to succeed.”

Being called on to defend Kevin Love, Stephenson was having trouble keeping the Cavaliers star from scoring, and he was drawing multiple fouls in the process. ESPN notes that at one point in the third quarter, Stephenson slammed the ball on the floor after the play was over.

Using language similar to that of a coach, George then focused his criticism on second-year center Myles Turner, who he says needs to play smarter:

“We just need him to challenge Tristan [Thompson], keep him off the boards. He needs to make himself available down low in the post. He needs to know at this point he has to take it to the next level. We’ll continue to work with him.”

George has starred early this postseason, and led his team in points, rebounds, and assists on Tuesday night.

Cavaliers star Kyrie Irving led all scorers with 37 points on the night. Monday marked the first time Cleveland’s big three of LeBron James, Kevin Love, and Irving all scored 25 or more points in one playoff game as teammates.

The Pacers now trail the Cavaliers 2-0 in the first round of the playoffs. The series moves to Indiana for Game 3, which will be played Thursday at 7 p.m. ET.

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