It looked like the fortunes of the LA Clippers franchise turned for the better when they signed Kawhi Leonard in the 2019 offseason. The team went from a bottom playoff seed to a title contender overnight, and the franchise was ready to lift its first NBA title. But now the NBA is investigating how the signing came about and if there were any illegal or unethical actions involving the deal.
Johnny Wilkes, a man who claims to be Kawhi Leonard's friend, said Jerry West owes him $2.5 million for helping the LA Clippers land Kawhi Leonard. Wilkes claims in his lawsuit that "he immediately went to work" after West agreed to the terms of the deal and went on to convince Kawhi Leonard and his uncle that the LA Clippers were the right destination for him.
The NBA found enough reason to launch an investigation into the matter, and now the LA Clippers and Hall of Famer Jerry West are under scrutiny.
NBA News: Jerry West and the LA Clippers under investigation by the league
The NBA legend whose silhouette is the NBA logo itself, Jerry West has been sued by Wilkes for breach of contract. Wilkes claims that he was involved in the recruitment of Kawhi Leonard and that West owes him $2.5 million. He also allegedly brokered a deal between West and Kawhi Leonard's uncle, Dennis Robertson, which involved giving Uncle Dennis a Southern California home and a travel expense account.
All of these things were mentioned in the lawsuit including how the LA Clippers needed to trade for Paul George in order to sign Kawhi Leonard. The NBA apparently found these deals suspicious and have launched an investigation into the matter as a result of the TMZ Sports report.
Jerry West issued a statement regarding the allegations,
"I am not aware of any lawsuit being filed against me and I deny engaging in any improper conduct in connection with the signing of Kawhi Leonard."
We don't know what it could mean for the franchise and Jerry West if the NBA finds evidence of wrongdoing. The fans and everyone around the league will have to wait for further reports and an official statement from the NBA .Published 18 Dec 2020, 05:42 IST