Ever since the San Antonio Spurs acquired Kawhi Leonard from the Indiana Pacers on the evening of the 2011 NBA Draft, he and Danny Green have been teammates. This partnership remained in place in the 2018-19 NBA season, as Leonard and Green were sent to the Toronto Raptors, with the Spurs receiving shooting guard DeMar DeRozan and center Jakob Poeltl in return. However, the latest rumors point to the duo’s eight years as teammates coming to an end, assuming Leonard spurns one of his top suitors in the 2019 free agency period, the Los Angeles Lakers.
As quoted by ClutchPoints, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski appeared on a recent episode of SportsCenter, where he discussed the latest update on the 32-year-old Green, who, like Leonard, is an unrestricted free agent. The renowned NBA insider said that Green has been “waiting to see what happens” in Los Angeles and that he thinks the veteran wingman would “like to play for the Lakers if there’s an opportunity there,” meaning if Leonard chooses to sign with another team or re-sign with the Raptors.
Although he has spent his entire NBA career as a role player who specializes in three-point shooting and defense, Green has often been described by league analysts as the “ideal player” for a Lakers team with LeBron James and Anthony Davis, per ClutchPoints. The outlet explained that Green’s ability to knock down shots from beyond the arc could help space the floor for Los Angeles, adding that his credentials as a two-time NBA champion could be valuable for the Lakers, who have missed the playoffs for the past six seasons.
#NBAFreeAgency scoop: League sources suggest to https://t.co/NVriu7PM4m that #Mavs are showing interest in closing deals on both Danny Green and Marcus Morris … Green is the next big domino to fall. pic.twitter.com/9g8ear6bnI
— mike fisher ✭ (@fishsports) July 2, 2019
On the other hand, if the Lakers sign Leonard as rumors have been suggesting for the past several days, the team — which currently has more than $34 million in available salary cap space, per Spotrac — likely won’t be able to afford Green in free agency. Aside from the Lakers, Green has reportedly named the Dallas Mavericks as a potential destination and is also open to re-signing with the Raptors.
“He shared before that at this point in his career, he still wants to maximize what he can earn. As such, he won’t likely ink a mediocre deal with the Purple and Gold,” ClutchPoints predicted.
Meanwhile, recent rumors have suggested that Kawhi Leonard might not make his decision in free agency until a few days from now. On Wednesday night, The Athletic’s Jabari Young tweeted that the 2019 NBA Finals MVP and his representatives are still “going through the process and taking their time” before an official decision is announced.