After decades of serving as the model franchise of the NBA, the San Antonio Spurs have become embroiled in controversy and previously foreign circumstances. The first instance was with LaMarcus Aldridge, and now Kawhi Leonard at the center of a disconnect with the organization.
It stems from a right quadriceps injury that limited him to just nine games this past season. Leonard was eventually cleared by the Spurs medical staff, but declined to return to the court.
Moreover, he continued with his rehab away from the team. Rumblings of growing frustration have swelled to Leonard reportedly seeking a trade to Los Angeles. He’s said to be open to joining the Lakers and Clippers, with a preference on the former.
Although Leonard is entering the final year on his contract, the Spurs aren’t exactly moved to make a trade in the immediate future.
According to Chris Mannix of Yahoo! Sports, they aren’t floating Leonard in trade talks but are willing to field offers:
How the Spurs are operating, per multiple sources from teams that have checked in on Kawhi Leonard in recent days: We're not shopping him, but if you want to make us an offer, go ahead, we'll consider it.
— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixYS) June 20, 2018
Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich reportedly met with Leonard in San Diego on Tuesday. It was previously reported that Popovich was focused on mending fences with his All-Star, just as he did with Aldridge.
If the Spurs are to move forward with trading Leonard, the Lakers reportedly would face an uphill battle in prying him away. However, that could be mitigated if they prove to present San Antonio with the best offer.
The Spurs could offer Leonard a $219 million supermax contract, which is financial gain he would miss out on with a trade. But that’s not believed to be a concern for the 26-year-old.
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