What's the rumour?
Entering the off-season, Kawhi Leonard is the NBA's most in-demand free agent, and the Los Angeles Clippers are among his many suitors. With Kawhi being a Los Angeles native, the Clippers are believed to be leading the pack for Leonard's signature, and Bill Plaschke of the Los Angeles Times is reporting that the Clippers are confident that they have done everything in their power to land the Finals MVP:
In case you didn't know...
Leonard joined the Raptors from the San Antonio Spurs last summer, and during his debut season in Toronto, the 27-year-old led the franchise to its first-ever championship. During a historic postseason run, Leonard averaged 30.5 points, 9.1 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game, and his performances resulted in a second Finals MVP award.
The heart of the matter
Leonard could still decide to remain in Toronto with the Raptors, although the Clippers are increasingly looking like his most likely destination. According to the report,
The Clippers think they are the perfect spot. They think the quiet superstar would love the lack of drama in their shadowed organisation. They think the smart and versatile athlete would relish playing for legendary consultant Jerry West, coach Doc Rivers and a crew that pushed the Golden State Warriors to six games in the first round of the playoffs. They think the basketball entrepreneur would be thrilled to work for creative billionaire owner Steve Ballmer.
The uncertainty surely is driving the Clippers crazy. They have done everything they can to create an attractive home for Leonard outside of publicly begging him, although some would say Rivers already has done just that. But now, like everyone else, they are forced to read the tea leaves with fingers crossed and breaths held.
With the Lakers seemingly out of the mix and Leonard reportedly longing for a return home to L.A., Leonard appears destined to be wearing a Clippers jersey on the opening night of the 19-20 season.
NBA teams can contact free agents and their agents beginning on June 29 at 6 p.m. The official free agency window opens on June 30, although contracts can't be officially signed until July 6.
Let us know in the comments below if you believe the Clippers will manage to land Kawhi Leonard.
Also, don't forget to visit our dedicated Basketball section for the latest news, rumors, and analysis.Published 21 Jun 2019, 18:48 IST