NBA Free Agency Rumors: Lakers Will Pursue Kawhi Leonard After Anthony Davis Trade
Anthony Davis, Kawhi Leonard, Los Angeles Lakers
Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

After a drama-filled start to the offseason, there were questions about how it would impact the Los Angeles Lakers heading into the 2019 NBA Draft and free agency.

Fortunately for the Lakers, they moved up seven spots and landed the No. 4 pick at the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery. With an unexpected top-four draft pick, they eventually included it in the Anthony Davis trade with the New Orleans Pelicans.

Although there are currently conflicting reports about when the Davis trade will happen, the Lakers could still have a max-contract slot available to pursue a free agent.

As a result, the Lakers will pursue Kawhi Leonard following the Davis trade, according to Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer:

If it were to go through before July 6, the Lakers wouldn’t be able to create the $32.7 million necessary to sign Walker or another max free agent, such as Kawhi Leonard, who league sources say the Lakers will pursue.

Despite Leonard winning the 2019 NBA Finals, the Toronto Raptors reportedly ‘still have work to do’ in order to re-sign him, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:

“He came to Toronto, with the idea from San Antonio, this was a very fine one year way station and I’m sure exceeded his expectations how they managed him physically to be a Finals MVP again, to win a championship. But there was always the risk of him going back west. The L.A. Clippers are at the very top of that list, and I think the Raptors still have work to do between now and June 30 and the start of free agency to keep Kawhi Leonard in Toronto.”

When Leonard initially made his trade request from the San Antonio Spurs, he wanted to play for the Lakers. While that narrative has changed to the Los Angeles Clippers, the one constant has been his desire to play closer to home.

As for the Lakers, the hope is they did not look past the timing of the Davis trade. If it is executed on July 6, the Lakers will only have $23.7 million in free agency. However, if they can wait until July 30, they will have $32.5 million.

You May Also Like

Lakers Rumors: Darren Collison’s Prior Experience With Doc Rivers Would Not Prevent Him From Clippers

After the NBA trade deadline passes on Feb. 6, teams like the Los Angeles Lakers will turn their attention to the buyout market…

Lakers Rumors: ‘No Doubt’ Timberwolves Take Karl-Anthony Towns At No. 1

There’s been a lot of debate since the NBA Draft Lottery about…

NBA Rumors: Bubble Concept Being Discussed For G League Season

All 30 NBA teams appear set for training camp to begin on Dec. 1 after the free agency frenzy that just occurred…

Lakers Rumors: Team ‘Moving Up’ LaMarcus Aldridge’s Free Agency List

With the NBA Draft on Thursday, the Los Angeles Lakers will likely…