Woj reporting that Kawhi is warming to the idea is to be expected. Ujiri has been in contact. The sell job begins.
— Blake Murphy (@BlakeMurphyODC) July 19, 2018
Source – The Toronto Raptors are taking a chance by acquiring Kawhi Leonard from the San Antonio Spurs as he enters his walk year, but now that he has had some time to process the trade, he is reportedly approaching the move with a positive outlook.
Sean Deveney of Sporting News reported in the immediate aftermath of the trade that Leonard had “no interest” in playing for Toronto. However, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (h/t theScore’s Chris Walder) revealed later on Wednesday that the former All-Star is starting to “warm to the idea” of wearing a Raptors uniform.
In Deveney’s report, it was mentioned that the disgruntled star could sit out the 2018-19 season as he prepares for free agency next summer. After all, it’s no secret, as Wojnarowki has noted in the past, that Leonard wants to play in his hometown of Los Angeles.
Toronto will be able to offer Leonard a five-year, $190 million contract next offseason while opposing teams can only offer four years and $141 million. Then again, money may not be his top priority, as he was in line for a supermax deal worth more than $200 million had he remained in San Antonio.
Neither Leonard nor DeRozan were initially happy when news of the trade first broke. Fortunately for the Raptors, their newest star now appears to be willing to give his new city a chance. It will be up to the franchise to convince him over the coming months to stay in Toronto long-term.
Bah. Of course, he’s warming up to it and like we said in a recent post, Masai isn’t going to trade for a no show dick.
Let’s look at the trade from Leonards perspective:
-Didn’t want to play for SA (done)
-Want’s to play for a winner (he’ll go to the finals if he plays his ass off in Toronto)
-Wants to be in LA (still can)
-He’s out of the West
-He goes to a really good team with a clean slate
I’d be waring up to it as well if Toronto fined me my entire $20.1 million and tubed my chance for a max deal by being a dick.
It’s house money for Kawhi and the Raptors with a rebuild on the horizon and if they’re in the driver’s seat come playoff time, that changes everything. The ability to give him 50 million more than any other team doesn’t hurt either.