Kawhi Leonard’s free agency has felt like it’s taken forever, but in reality, it’s been only three days that the star forward has been mulling his NBA-shaping decision.
Leonard will decide between the Lakers, Clippers, and Raptors, with his final meeting being held Wednesday in Toronto. There has been buzz around the Lakers, as is expected, but for the most part there has been no real information available. People have tried to read aggressive bets on the Lakers to win the championship which pushed them to Even odds, while Canadian TV has tracked Leonard’s flight and followed his SUV from the airport via helicopter.
It’s been pandemonium, largely due to the lack of reliable information on his impending decision that can shake the entire league to its core. On Wednesday afternoon, Jalen Rose (who was among the first to call Kawhi’s tenure in San Antonio being over last year) decided to offer what he is hearing on a Get Up! special, and that he’s pretty confident Leonard will be staying in Toronto.
The part about the two-year deal is interesting, as it would be a fairly savvy move from Leonard, to get to the 35% max as a 10-year vet as soon as he’s eligible. Also, the “99 percent hearing” line leaves some wiggle room, but this is a very confident statement from Rose on national TV. If he’s wrong, he’ll face more trolling from Lakers fans than ever before, which is saying a lot given that he’s heard the “81” jokes for more than a decade now.
We will find out soon enough whether Rose is correct, but this is just about the first fairly reputable news source to put such a strong statement out regarding Kawhi’s free agency, and that in and of itself is noteworthy.