Report: Lakers rebuffed in talks with Spurs about Kawhi Leonard
From NBA Twitter and media reports
The Lakers reached out to the Spurs recently to gauge the possibility of acquiring Kawhi Leonard in a trade, but immediately felt San Antonio had no intention of engaging in any dialogue, according to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne.
Within the last week the Lakers contacted the Spurs to discuss a Kawhi Leonard trade. As one source put it, “they basically shut the door on us.”
— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) June 21, 2018
No players were discussed and as ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported Thursday, there has been no further dialogue between the teams.
Leonard has expressed a preference to be traded to Los Angeles, specifically the Lakers.
Spurs coach reportedly Gregg Popovich traveled Tuesday to Southern California and met with Leonard prior to Thursday’s NBA Draft.
Last week, reports surfaced that the 2014 NBA Finals wanted to leave the only franchise he knows.
Leonard played in just nine games for San Antonio in the 2017-18 campaign due to a quad injury he initially suffered in Game 1 of the 2017 Western Conference finals. The two-time Kia Defensive Player of the Year’s absence was especially notable late in the season, when he went to New York to continue rehab and chose not to be with the team during its playoff run. San Antonio was defeated 4-1 in the first round of the playoffs by eventual-champion Golden State.
The two-time All-Star Leonard can enter unrestricted free agency in 2019 if he does not sign a contract extension with the Spurs this summer. Leonard is due just over $20 million next season.