San Antonio Spurs: Kawhi Leonard still wants Los Angeles, unsurprisingly
By Rob Wolkenbrod
San Antonio Spurs star, Kawhi Leonard, still wants to go to Los Angeles, according to Cris Carter of Fox Sports.
Since the Kawhi Leonard trade desire went public in June, the controversial San Antonio Spurs star has been connected to Los Angeles — whether it’s the Lakers or the Clippers. Other teams have emerged with interest since, and the Spurs can trade him to anyone they want while under contract.
The Boston Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers and the Toronto Raptors are the non-Los Angeles teams that have been reported as suitors. However, would Leonard even want to join any of these Eastern Conference squads?
Fox Sports’ Cris Carter — an NFL Hall of Famer — said on First Things First, that he heard himself, how Leonard only wants to play in Los Angeles. That would mean no change in tune on anything that has been reported (h/t Hoops Rumors):
“Nothing’s changed from Kawhi’s side. He still wants to go to Los Angeles & he’s still not interested in being rented out for 1 season — that being Philly, Boston, Toronto, or any other team."@criscarter80 reports after talking to Kawhi’s camp last night pic.twitter.com/3Sk3fVy8Xx
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) July 13, 2018
Not the most shocking statement from Carter. Leonard is from the Los Angeles area and attended college at San Diego State. Plus, he was often spotted around Hollywood since the NBA season ended, including taking in a Dodgers game.
If Leonard wants Los Angeles, it’s familiarity and a big market for his brand, however big it may be. after sitting out most of the 2017-18 season due to injury and amidst this saga that started in January. When (and if) he joins the Clippers or Lakers, though, remains to be seen, as there’s still no public indication on a trade’s timetable. With two-plus months until the season starts, it’s plenty of time for the San Antonio front office to wait it out.
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The Clippers or Lakers do not have to trade for Leonard, either. They can wait and sign him in the 2019 free-agent period. It’s a risk for both teams, as whoever San Antonio sends him to, they can find a way to complete a contract extension. So, let’s see how this unfolds into the rest of July and the remaining time this summer.