shooting guard Danny Green made a statement that could make fans happy. In an interview with ESPN‘s “Get Up,” Green said Kawhi Leonard personally informed him that he wants to remain with the organization amid reports about his bleak future with the franchise. Amid the reported strain in their relationship, the Spurs are hoping to mend fences with superstar Kawhi Leonard and sign him to a maximum contract extension worth $219 million. Earlier, Tom Orsborn of San Antonio Express-News reported that the Spurs hope to meet with Leonard and his representatives to iron out their differences and agree to a five-year contract extension that would surpass the deal signed by Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors ($201 million).
The strain in Leonard’s relationship with the Spurs and with his own group, according to Adrian Wojnarowski and Michael C. Wright of ESPN. The quad injury limited Leonard to just nine games in the regular season before the Spurs sidelined him indefinitely. Last season, Leonard was a finalist for the MVP trophy after averaging a career-best 25.5 points per game.
Popovich could convince Leonard to stay
The date of the meeting is yet to be scheduled as coach Gregg Popovich is still mourning the death of his wife, Erin. It is believed that Popovich’s relationship with Leonard remains strong and that the veteran coach could convince him to work out their differences and stay with the team.
Popovich’s convincing power was also instrumental in keeping All-Star big man LaMarcus Aldridge in San Antonio. In the offseason, Aldridge demanded a trade from the Spurs, but Popovich convinced the big man to stay. Aldridge’s decision to stay paid dividends as he established All-Star worthy numbers and led the Spurs to the first round of the Playoffs where they lost to the Golden State Warriors in five games.
Spurs might trade Leonard if…
If the Spurs and Leonard fail to find common ground, Osbourne said San Antonio will have no other option but to explore a possible trade involving the player tagged as the future cornerstone of the franchise. Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer said the Spurs would trade Leonard if they receive a “grand-slam offer.” in Leonard, including the Los Angeles Lakers and the Philadelphia 76ers. The Cleveland Cavaliers and the Boston Celtics are reportedly keeping a close watch on the developments surrounding the Leonard saga. It was earlier reported that Leonard is interested in playing for a team close to his hometown of California. The Lakers could assemble a package of Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram and a 2019 first-round pick for Leonard. The 76ers, for their part, could swing a trade involving Dario Saric, Robert Covington and last year’s No. 1 overall pick, Markelle Fultz.