By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
According to media reports, the Los Angeles Lakers re-engaged the San Antonio Spurs in trade talks on Wednesday night. The potential trade would involve disgruntled star, Kawhi Leonard.
This is the first known talks between the two sides since the Spurs shut the door on their previous talks. San Antonio attempted to work out their differences — as they previously did with LaMarcus Aldridge — however, it appears Leonard’s issues with the team is much more than being resolved.
The Lakers are attempting to strike a deal with the Spurs before Friday’s deadline, as players can either opt-in or opt-out of their contracts. Los Angeles is hoping that they could convince the Spurs to make a deal involving Leonard, as they continue to pursue LeBron James.
Los Angeles cannot speak to James until after Friday, as it is believed that he will opt-out of his contract. While the Lakers would like to sign James and acquire Leonard in a trade, there is belief within the league that Leonard would not want to play with James.
James is expected to opt out of his $35.6 million deal for next season. The Lakers are believed to be the favorites to add LeBron, along with his current team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he may opt to play one more season, before deciding to move on in 2019.
Leonard does not trust the Spurs anymore. He believes that the team mishandled his quad injury, as he only played in nine games this season.
It has been previously reported that the Spurs would hope that they can work out an agreement to send Leonard to the Eastern Conference instead of the Lakers. While Los Angeles is rushing to make a deal happen, the Spurs are going to take all the time they want — even ruining the Lakers plans — as they could potentially wait until February’s trade deadline before they strike a deal.
Leonard, who was the 15th overall pick by the Indiana Pacers in the 2011 NBA Draft before being traded to the Spurs with Dāvis Bertāns and Erazem Lorbek for George Hill, has spent the past seven seasons in San Antonio. He also won an NBA Finals with the team, where he was named The Finals MVP.
Through nine games, all starts, he averaged 16.2 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 2.0 steals, and 1.0 blocks.
In his career, he has appeared in 407 games, including 380 stars. The two-time All-Star is averaging 16.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.8 steals, and 0.7 blocks.
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