Paul George revealed he has already been in contact with Russell Westbrook as he eagerly anticipates linking up with this year's NBA MVP at Oklahoma City Thunder.
It was confirmed last week that George had been traded to the Thunder by the Indiana Pacers, with Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis moving in the opposite direction.
Like many observers, George himself conceded his surprise at joining the Thunder, but cannot wait to get started alongside his new team-mate, who set a new record of 42 triple-doubles last season.
"I thought I was going to, like, four or five other teams that were pretty active in the trade. When I found out it was OKC I was quite surprised, but at the same time I was happy about the trade," George said.
"I was thrilled, I was looking forward to it. All I wanted was a chance and an opportunity to play for something special and ultimately win a championship and right off the back I think I get that here, playing alongside Russ.
"We've had a lot of time to talk. Right after the trade I called him that night and we kind of talked and went over the excitement of playing alongside one another. Yesterday we got a good time, we had a lot of time to talk.
"It wasn't even about basketball. Just vibing together and getting to know one another and, I think, creating a friendship there."
Asked about the prospect of playing with Westbrook, George hopes he will be able to release some of the pressure on the MVP's shoulders.
"For myself, just running the floor, creating space for him to operate. He's so hard to stay in front of, he's going to attract double teams night in and night out, almost every possession.
"So I think for myself it will be easy to space the floor and be a knock-down shooter for him. And I think the opposite. I demand double teams and [I am] a guy teams scout for and try to prep for.
"I think both of us... he doesn't have to have the pressure of shouldering all that workload and have to feel he has to do it alone, as he's never had, but I don't want him to have that pressure at all.
"I think we'll work really well. I'm excited about this journey with him, and I'm excited to rep those three letters."
|Muntari joins Seedorf at Deportivo La Coruna|
|F1 champs Mercedes launch new W09|
|Wigan coach Wane ponders Hardaker lifeline|
|Hamilton hopes for pre-season contract resolution|
|Winter Olympics 2018: Joy for Gisin, Hirscher´s woe and record-breaking win for Wu|
|Rooney: Moving to China for the money would have been easy|
|Carrasco left out of Atletico squad amid China move reports|
|Arthur: Move to Barcelona still on track|
|Blatter backs Morocco 2026 World Cup bid|
|Moeen backs Rashid, Hales white-ball decisions|
|Wenger sees Welbeck emerging from torrid struggles|
|Zidane stands by selfless Benzema|
|Sodhi earns New Zealand ODI recall|
|´Important names´ keen on Inter star Icardi|
|Hughes returns in only England change|
|Manchester United v Chelsea: Mourinho and Conte´s feud in their own words|
|Manchester United v Chelsea: Grant´s disastrous debut, Drogba´s ´offside´ goal and other Old Traffor|
|Walker motivated by EFL Cup final showdown with Arsenal|
|Manchester United v Chelsea: ´Specialist in failure´, eye-pokes and Mourinho´s other best rows|
|CONCACAF Champions League Review: America close in on quarters with huge win|
|Keane defends Pogba as former United captain demands more from Lukaku and Sanchez|
|Stoger labels Reus ´indispensable´ amid Milan links|
|Ferdinand and Man United team-mates doubted De Gea|
|Sock, Isner and Raonic crash out at Delray Beach|
|Rain sees Cilic-Monfils suspended at crucial stage|
|Djokovic steps up rehab as Federer leads the way|
|Cuban fined $600K for tanking comments|
|Fowler says PGA National demands full attention|
|Rory McIlroy curbing expectations before Masters|
|Shakhtar would´ve won by more if not for Roma´s Alisson – Fonseca|
|Popovich would be ´surprised´ if Leonard returns for Spurs this season|
|Championship Review: Wolves squander two-goal lead to Norwich, Cardiff City take advantage|
|Mourinho happy with ´big effort´ from Pogba|
|Benneteau ousts Bautista Agut in Marseille|
|Mourinho questions medical staff after ´bad´ Herrera injury|
|Sarri demands better from Napoli ´buffoons´|
|Mourinho hugs reporter for asking about McTominay instead of Pogba|
|Di Francesco slams Roma: I should have substituted half of them!|
|Curtains for Konta and Ostapenko in Dubai|
|De Gea happy with ´important´ wonder save|
|Woods eager to experience Masters ´rush´|
|Vazquez and Asensio important to Madrid, says Zidane|
|Shakhtar Donetsk 2 Roma 1: Fred stunner seals first-leg comeback|
|Sevilla 0 Manchester United 0: De Gea ensures Mourinho´s men stay level|
|Klaasen and Duminy half-centuries set up T20 decider|
|Herrera injury gives dropped Pogba chance for reprieve|
|Tindall urges England to ´hunt´ vulnerable Scotland|
|Firmino insists he did not abuse Holgate|
|Leganes 1 Real Madrid 3: Casemiro inspires comeback for Zidane´s men|
|Milan have everything to lose – Gattuso worried about complacency|
|United a big team in defeat - Mourinho aims dig at City|
|Firmino escapes punishment after Holgate allegation|
|Mourinho benches Pogba for Sevilla clash|
|Cavendish withdraws after Abu Dhabi crash|
|Rugby greats put on show in French Alps snow|
|Gremio refute claims of €40m Arthur agreement with Barcelona|
|Messi will sign another Barcelona contract, predicts Bartomeu|
|UEFA rejects PSG appeal over Rabiot´s Real Madrid booking|
|Hardaker sacked by Tigers after failed drugs test|
|James to miss ´a few days´ of Bayern training with calf injury|
|Bellew not feeling Haye love|
|Nantes not stopping Ranieri if Italy come calling|
|Milan owner Li slams ´fake news´ over financial woes|
|Italy make three changes for France encounter|
|Wenger still gunning for top four spot with Arsenal|
|AFC Champions League Review: Kanazaki braces inspires Kashima|
|Gloucester centre Scott to re-join Edinburgh|
|Ospina to get Wembley nod as Wenger waits on Ramsey|
|Pogba not struggling at United, claims Deschamps|
|No police action against Gloucester coach Ackermann or son after nightclub incident|