Kawhi Leonard Wants Out Of San Antonio
- Author: Stacy Allen Jun 17, 2018,
Jun 17, 2018, 3:59
The stand-off has led many to suggest Leonard might have played his last game in a Spurs jersey - including Marc Stein.
According to multiple reports, Spurs physicians had declared the two-time All-Star as being healthy enough to return, but Leonard and his camp insisted he isn't ready for game-action.
The Cavs have the No. 8 pick in this year's draft, as well as the contracts of Kevin Love ($22.6 million this season, $24.1 million next) and former Spur George Hill ($20 million; $19 million). The Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers also could be in the mix in a trade for Leonard, who has averaged 16.3 points and 6.2 rebounds during his National Basketball Association career. This is what the Indiana Pacers did with Paul George after he informed them of his intentions to leave them for the Lakers once he hit free agency by sending him to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Lakers have a number of talented young players who could be attractive in a trade for Leonard, including Lonzo Ball, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Julius Randle.
Kawhi Leonard is apparently unhappy with his situation in San Antonio, after all. ESPN reported the Lakers are at the center of his preferences.
The Spurs have other draft prospects to evaluate in the meantime, as they now hold the No. 18 pick in the first round. Earlier this afternoon, a number of the top reporters around the National Basketball Association tweeted that the superstar wants to be moved.
If Leonard does become available in trade talks, the Boston Celtics will be interested in probing the Spurs about a deal, league sources told Wojnarowski.
However, Leonard does not have a no-trade clause in his contract.
So even if Melton isn't on their shortlist right now, the visit could simply be the Lakers doing their due diligence on a position that could unexpectedly emerge as a need before the draft.
The Clippers are poised to begin their own rebuilding effort after missing the playoffs for the first time in seven seasons.
One would be reckless to ignore the potential package of draft picks and star players Boston could offer, including Kyrie Irving or - could they be so cold - Gordon Hayward. As bad as it sounds, seeing some of these teams already linked to Leonard, and considering what they would be willing to give up could put Philadelphia at a major disadvantage. Leonard, if traded, marks the outlier in the group and may forever be known as the only player to want out of this regime.