Although nothing is certain yet, the news of Kawhi Leonard reportedly wishing to leave San Antonio Spurs, as one can imagine, wasn't taken very well by the Spurs fans. His preferred destination, according to Adrian Wojnarowski, is the Los Angeles Lakers. Things seemed to get worse, as Leonard played just nine games, then sat out, feeling he wasn't ready to play, despite the Spurs clearing him.
A source with the Spurs told ESPN that Leonard hasn't asked them for a trade.
Leonard's fallout with the Spurs has been a year-long saga, stemming from a disagreement over how to handle an injury to his quad.
The former Defensive Player of the Year and Finals MVP can potentially miss out on $31 million by signing an extension with a different team other than the Spurs.
Much like the Paul George fiasco from last season, Kawhi is entering the last season of his contract, making him a free agent the season after next.More news: Trump meets PM Lee at Istana ahead of Trump-Kim summit
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Kawhi Leonard #2 of the San Antonio Spurs is introduced before the game against the Denver Nuggets on January 13, 2018 at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas.
The Suns also hold the draft's 16th pick.
The Knicks wouldn't have a chance at getting Leonard if they wanted to get him in a trade.
As the Lakers prepare an offer for Leonard, they will also have to contend with the reality that San Antonio will be reluctant to send one of the league's elite talents to another Western Conference rival. Is that enough? Probably not, but there's not really anything else between the two teams that makes sense. Though, with Friday's news that Leonard wants out, it brought up the "Did they ever meet?" question, and, if so, how did it result?
Meanwhile in Playa Vista, a few miles north of the Lakers' training facility in El Segundo, the Clippers have two first-round draft picks, Nos. Acquiring Leonard would play a big part in that regard.