The potential reason for the reported drama between the San Antonio Spurs and Kawhi Leonard? A “lack of clear communication.”
The “rift” between the San Antonio Spurs and Kawhi Leonard arguably became the biggest topic of the post-NBA Trade Deadline rumor mill. It was due to Leonard’s injury status, as he played all but nine games this season due to a right quad injury. However, he returned to the team, after three weeks away, and looks set for a return this month.
As this situation starts to drift into the background, Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders reported a new reason for the relationship trouble between the Spurs and Leonard: a “lack of clear communication.”
According to Kyler, Leonard was against a return to the court, due to persistent quad pain. The team doctors cleared him, but inquiries for other opinions on this injury created “something of a rift,” with the latter word described as “a little laughable” as the perceived notion of the situation.
Regarding the “lack of clear communication,” Kyler noted it’s no secret that Leonard does not act as the most open communicator. Despite this and some frustrations, the team let this situation “take its course.” Though a sitdown, similar to the LaMarcus Aldridge saga of 2017, might need to take place to sort things out.
Kyler wrapped it up with speculation on Leonard’s future. He can become a free agent in 2019, and it’s assumed some of the injury drama links to a desire for a new contract, potentially worth $250 million. It’s not expected the team shops the former MVP candidate in trade talks.
There’s plenty to digest from this report. The only thing that matters, for now, is when Leonard can return, the impact he will provide and how far it can take this team in the playoffs.
The surrounding drama may simmer soon. If not, it could become an offseason topic for the Silver and Black.