There will be no shortage of suitors for Leonard and to acquire him, the Cavs will have to battle a number of teams for his services: the Lakers, the Los Angeles Clippers, the Boston Celtics, the Philadelphia 76ers and the New York Knicks.
Kawhi's desire to be traded away from the Spurs is something which Kyrie Irving can relate to, as he went through a similar situation with the Cleveland Cavaliers last summer before he was traded away to the Boston Celtics. Since Leonard has just one year remaining on his contract before he is eligible to opt out, he has some leverage over the Spurs to dictate a trade destination.
Leonard played in only nine game with the Spurs this past season because of a leg injury - officially described as right quadriceps tendinopathy, and the Spurs listed him as out on their injury reports for much of the year citing "injury management".
All of Leonard's nine appearances with the Spurs this season were prior to the All-Star break, none of them coming after January 13.
Among all of the insane storylines to transpire throughout the 2017-18 National Basketball Association season, the Kawhi Leonard saga in San Antonio may have been the strangest.
The Spurs could also decide to stall, keeping their disgruntled star by waiting until the February trade deadline to find the best deal possible. Leonard - who was drafted 15th overall in the 2011 NBA Draft - has spent all seven seasons of his career with the Spurs. If the reports are indeed true, the request makes for perhaps the biggest drama the Spurs franchise has seen in more than two decades.
Leonard believes that the team turned on him when he got a second opinion on his injury.
In fact, they've amended the offer for Lebron James. While many would not like the Lakers giving up their talented young players for Kawhi Leonard, there are certainly some benefits that would come from it. Some claim that it was a dirty play, but nonetheless, Leonard was out for some time.
Markkanen would probably have to be packaged with the No. 7 overall pick in the upcoming draft.
For what it was worth, and that's probably not a whole lot, one oddsmaker on Friday put the chances of Leonard joining the Lakers next season at 5/7.
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