One of the biggest developments of the NBA season has been the injury and subsequent storylines following Kawhi Leonard. The star forward appeared in only nine games this season with a mysterious injury keeping him off the court.
Beyond the injury concerns, there have been reports that Leonard is not happy in San Antonio with a large divide between him and the Spurs’ front office. At the forefront of some reports has been Leonard’s rumored desire to play in a bigger market where he could capitalize on endorsement deals.
As a result of the reports, there has been much speculation about Leonard’s future in San Antonio with multiple teams reportedly reaching out to gauge the Spurs’ trade interest. The Los Angeles Lakers are among those teams, with a desire to pair Leonard with a star free agent to finally contend for the playoffs and potentially a title.
However, it’s not clear if Leonard’s time in San Antonio is coming to an end and according to his teammate Danny Green on ESPN’s Get Up! Leonard has told him that he wants to stay on the team he has spent his career playing for.
It would not be a huge surprise if Leonard does indeed want to stay in San Antonio. It’s one of the premier organizations in the NBA and consistently a threat in the playoffs. They can also offer the former Defensive Player of the Year winner a five-year extension worth more than $200 million. It also should not be surprising that Leonard is saying that to his teammates whether he feels that way or not.
The Lakers will probably still do their due diligence on a potential trade but it’s clear they do not want to overspend as they are reportedly confident in their abilities to sign him as a free agent in a year if he is not extended. This is just another chapter in the Kawhi Leonard saga.