Speculations abound that Kawhi Leonard is on his way out of the San Antonio Spurs this summer. There are reports that several teams are already inquiring about the two-time NBA All-Star’s availability, which led FanSided‘s King James Gospel to suggest that the Cleveland Cavaliers should join the “lottery.”
ESPN‘s Brian Windhorst revealed in a recent episode of Outside The Lines that “teams will call the Spurs and inquire about the availability” of Leonard at the end of this season, saying that he obtained the information from “several NBA general managers” whom he did not name.
Leonard, 26, reportedly has long been cleared by team doctors to return to action on the basketball court. However, he is still hesitant to play as he claimed that his injury has not yet fully healed, following the advice of a third-party medical team.
According to numerous reports, the situation had created tension not only between the Spurs and Leonard’s camp but also between him and his teammates as well. Veteran All-Stars Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili have both aired their sides, and their comments seemed to be in opposition to the former NBA Finals MVP’s current actions.
Leonard has only played nine games this season, averaging dismal numbers of 16.2 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 2.3 assists in only 23.3 minutes per game, as he was hounded by lingering quadriceps issues since last summer.
King James Gospel‘s Quenton Albertie said that the Cavaliers should not pass up the opportunity to acquire Leonard even at the expense of their prized 2018 first-round draft pick from the Brooklyn Nets. He then suggested three potential trade packages that Cleveland could offer to the Spurs for two-time NBA Defensive Players of the Year, and the last one was a three-player bundle that also includes the Nets selection.
The reporter specifically mentioned youngsters Jordan Clarkson, Cedi Osman, and Ante Zizic as part of the package with the Brooklyn pick. Albertie said that this offer would definitely attract the Spurs’ interest if the club decides to “go all-in with the youth movement” and move on from Leonard.
In this deal, San Antonio actually gets four players under 25 years old as the Brooklyn pick would “secure them a rookie” in the upcoming 2018 draft class. Clarkson, 25, is the oldest of the bunch while Osman is 22 and Zizic is 21.