LA Clippers rumors: Is LAC no longer favorites for Kawhi Leonard?

Kawhi Leonard, LA Clippers. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Kawhi Leonard, LA Clippers. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

According to longtime NBA writer Marc Stein, the LA Clippers may be in trouble when it comes to signing Kawhi Leonard for next season.

All three of the Mavericks, Knicks, and Heat have attractive aspects of their potential fit with Leonard.

Leonard’s a quiet guy, so we really have no idea what he’s thinking right now. These reports aren’t the most flattering, however, as we know for a fact that Kawhi will be the best free agent available if he opts out of his deal.

Rumors surrounding Kawhi Leonard leaving the LA Clippers seem to be turning into more of a reality.

In the regular season, there really weren’t any true ‘rumors’ when it came to the possibility of Kawhi Leonard leaving the LA Clippers.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN made it clear that he’s likely not going anywhere if the Clippers made a deep playoff run, but then rumors surrounding potential displeasure from Leonard surrounding how the Clippers handled his injury sparked up.

It was eerily similar to how his situation with the San Antonio Spurs went down. On top of that, the Mavericks are going to make a strong push for Kawhi, and they weren’t even thought of as contenders for the superstar until the offseason.

Kawhi needs to make a decision about his option by August 1st. The Clippers are within their rights to negotiate with him until then of course.

They need to be recruiting him harder than San Diego State recruited him when Leonard was in high school. This is getting much more serious than originally expected, because the Mavs originally weren’t expected to have the money.

They’d theoretically have to trade Kristaps Porzingis if they wanted to clear space as far as money goes, and rumor has it that nobody wants Porzingis. If the Mavs are still this serious about acquiring Leonard, they may know something we don’t.

Not to mention the Heat are absolutely still players in the Kawhi sweepstakes with Jimmy Butler and Leonard having expressed interest in playing together in the past, and them setting themselves up to spend this offseason. The Knicks have $72.8 million to spend, and can sign Leonard to whatever deal they want.

3 Clippers that could be traded before the NBA Draft. dark. Next

The Clippers have plenty to offer Leonard. They offer him a championship contending team, Ty Lue, a partnership with his buddy Paul George, and a chance to play at home. That being said, Kawhi is the premium potential free agent available this offseason. The line will likely be longer than these three teams, and their pitches for the superstar will admittedly be hard not to take a look at.