The Kawhi Leonard saga has by far been one of the strangest storylines of the 2017-18 NBA season, and it has continued into the summer. The fractured relationship has led to Leonard requesting a trade from the San Antonio Spurs.
Leonard met with Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich recently to discuss his frustrations with the team, and it was clear that a mishandling of the injury was a large part of his decision to request a trade. Leonard is also said to have been angered by Popovich and Tony Parker’s negative commentary about him as he recovered from his injury.
While many have supported Leonard, there are some who are skeptical of his intentions. One of those people is former Spurs forward Bruce Bowen, who had some harsh words for Leonard when describing the situation, via ESPN NBA radio on Sirius XM:
“I think he’s getting bad advice. I think what you’re starting to see now is, you know, an individual given a certain amount of advice and it’s not the right advice. Here it is: You were protected in San Antonio. … I think there’s nothing but excuses going on. So, first it was, ‘Well, I was misdiagnosed.’ Look here, you got $18 million this year. And you think they’re trying to rush you?”
What has made this situation so strange is the fact that the Spurs have almost never had issues like this. The era of Popovich, Parker, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobli has led to nothing but success and machine-like efficiency.
And many felt that Leonard’s even-keeled personality would continue the drama-free Spurs way. Bowen’s words are certainly harsh, as he basically accused Leonard of creating excuses in an effort to get to Los Angeles.
And while it may never be known exactly what is going through Leonard’s head, it seemed pretty clear that he was hurt by something San Antonio did. Leonard has also been a class act, and Bowen’s accusations add yet another layer to what has already been the best and strangest story of the summer.
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