By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
Kawhi Leonard has finally been traded. The disgruntled former San Antonio Spurs trade rumors have been going on for the past several weeks.
Leonard was dealt to the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday morning. Danny Green also joins him in the deal.
In exchange for Leonard and Green, the Spurs are receiving DeMar DeRozan,
Jakob Pöltl, and a 2019 first-round draft pick.
The deal with the Spurs intensified in recent days. Toronto was the only destination left after the Los Angeles Lakers refused to include Brandon Ingram in a deal and the Philadelphia 76ers refused to include Markelle Fultz and
Dario Šarić in a package.
Neither Leonard, or DeRozan are reportedly happy with their new destination. Leonard is saying that he will refuse to play in Toronto, while DeRozan is not happy he’s dealt, as he saying there “ain’t no loyalty” after the deal.
“Can’t trust ’em,” DeRozan said. “Ain’t no loyalty in this game. Sell you out quick for a little bit of nothing…”
Toronto is definitely taking a gamble with Leonard. He has one-year left on his current deal and there are concerns with his quad.
The Raptors will reportedly take the same approach that the Oklahoma City Thunder took with Paul George last summer. After spending one season with the team, George decided to remain in OKC.
If Leonard is healthy, he should definitely be able to put up elite numbers.
Leonard, who his teammates questioned his intentions with his quad injury, as Tony Parker said his quad injury was a 100 times worse than Leonard’s. He also reportedly caused a fracture within the locker room.
The former NBA Finals MVP played in just nine games last season. He averaged 16.2 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 2.0 steals, and 1.0 blocks per game. He spent seven seasons with the Spurs.
Green, who spent the past eight seasons with the Spurs after being his career with the Cleveland Cavaliers, appeared in 70 games, including 60 starts. He averaged 8.6 points, 3.6 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 0.9 steals, and 1.1 blocks per game last season.
He appeared in 520 games, including 464 starts. He averaged 9.1 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steals, and 0.9 blocks per game in his career in San Antonio.
DeRozan, who spent his entire career with the Raptors before the deal, averaged 23.0 points, 3.9 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 1.1 steals, and 0.3 blocks in 80 starts last season. The 80 starts with Toronto last season were the most since the 2012-13 season when he started all 82 games.
In his Raptors career, he appeared in 675 games, including 663 starts. He averaged 19.7 points, 4.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.0 steals, and 0.3 blocks per game.
Poeltl, who was the ninth overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft by the Raptors, appeared in a career-high 82 games last season. He averaged 6.9 points, 4.8 rebounds, 0.7 assists, 0.5 steals, and 1.2 blocks per game.
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