Indiana Pacers President Larry Bird put away his golf clubs Monday and went back to work trying to sign star swingman Paul George to a long-term contract.
If they don't reach a deal with George, the NBA's most improved player last season, he could become a free agent next summer.
George has repeatedly said he wants to stay in Indy, and Bird and coach Frank Vogel said Monday they intend to keep him in town. The hope is the two sides can reach a deal before the start of this season. Indiana opens training camp Saturday.
Bird would not say whether the two sides are close to a deal after Yahoo! Sports reported that they were nearing agreement on a five-year, $90 million contract.