San Antonio Spurs News

San Antonio Spurs: Kawhi Leonard to reportedly return by exit interviews

By Rob Wolkenbrod
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 02: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Kawhi Leonard #2 of the San Antonio Spurs in action against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on January 2, 2018 in New York City. The Spurs defeated the Knicks 100-91. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 02: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Kawhi Leonard #2 of the San Antonio Spurs in action against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on January 2, 2018 in New York City. The Spurs defeated the Knicks 100-91. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
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Kawhi Leonard will reportedly rejoin the San Antonio Spurs for exit interviews, according to the San Antonio Express-News.

After a season of turmoil between the San Antonio Spurs and Kawhi Leonard, the situation has the potential to escalate this offseason. Leonard has a looming contract extension and teams already want to make an offer for his talents.

Earlier Wednesday, ESPN’s Michael C. Wright reported the Spurs want to have a Gregg Popovich-led meeting with Leonard this summer. Its specific date is unknown, but it might not be the only time these sides meet.

According to Jabari Young of the San Antonio Express-News (h/t Yahoo Sports), Leonard will return to San Antonio for scheduled exit interviews.

And now the offseason questions will come…before the nonsense starts, #Spurs and Kawhi Leonard will be the topic of discussion. Source tell @ExpressNews he’ll return to San Antonio once Exit Interviews are scheduled and take it from there.

— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) April 25, 2018

As Young noted, it will precede the likely hoopla around the Spurs and Leonard this offseason. It could mean trade speculation, questions on the potential contract extension and if the player-organization relationship can be fixed.

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As for the exit interview, it’s an opportunity for everyone to sit down and discuss the events of the past six months. How that conversation transpires remains to be seen, if it happens during the interview or this reported Popovich-led meeting.

Leonard missed all but nine games this season due to a right quadriceps injury. It was suffered sometime before the preseason, but the organization never announced its severity or how it was suffered.

The 2018-19 season will be Leonard’s final season of a five-year extension he signed in 2015. He has a player option for 2019-20, but with a $219 million extension on the table, it’s possible this decision will not happen if the Spurs present this supermax offer or trade him this offseason. It would place the San Diego State product among the NBA’s highest-paid players, including Stephen Curry, LeBron James, Paul Millsap, Gordon Hayward and Blake Griffin.

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An extension seems far away, however, as the two sides must work out their differences first. After that, if fences can be mended, the situation will develop from there and make this one of San Antonio’s most interesting offseasons ever.

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