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NBA Trade Rumors: Kawhi Leonard the only untouchable player on LA Clippers, franchise expected to target a playmaker

Kawhi Leonard
Kawhi Leonard
Raunak J
ANALYST
Modified 22 Sep 2020, 08:10 IST
Rumors
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The LA Clippers have a lot to figure out this offseason. After their shock exit in the Western Conference Semifinals at the hands of the Denver Nuggets, NBA trade rumors have started circulating about the possible moves that the franchise could make to sort out its roster. They need to look for pieces who would complement Kawhi Leonard well. Several names have emerged as trade targets but what about players who could exit the team?

Fans have been visibly discontent with the output of Paul George among other players, but could he be on the trading block too? As per Jovan Buha of The Athletic, that could very much be the case.

"I think Leonard is the only untouchable on the roster. George is close to untouchable, but I think the Clippers would move him for the right package — and, obviously, if that was Leonard’s preferred outcome." 
Paul George
Paul George

It sounds implausible at this moment that the LA Clippers would part ways with Paul George. Yes, he hasn't delivered to expectations but PG13 is the same player for whom the franchise gave up five first-round picks and two pick swaps in addition to possible cornerstone Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. More importantly, he's the player with whom Kawhi Leonard himself originally wanted to team up with.

NBA Trade Rumors: LA Clippers expected to foray into the market for a playmaker

Clippers owner Steve Ballmer with Paul George and Kawhi Leonard
Clippers owner Steve Ballmer with Paul George and Kawhi Leonard

One of the highlighted weaknesses of the LA Clippers this season was the lack of a playmaking guard. Patrick Beverley makes the team for his defensive capabilities while Lou Williams is a volume scorer.

Kawhi Leonard took over some of the passing responsibilities for the team during the playoffs but that wasn't enough. As per Shams Charania of The Athletic, rival franchises expect the LA Clippers to address that shortcoming in the offseason.

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"Rival teams expect the Clippers to work the trade market for a playmaker in the backcourt..."

The LA Clippers don't have a lot of financial room to sign premium free agents so it'll be interesting to see which players they decide to part with in order to reshape their roster.


Also read: Why it's unfair to blame Kawhi Leonard for the LA Clippers' disastrous exit from the 2020 NBA Playoffs


Published 22 Sep 2020, 08:10 IST
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