A month after his trade request went public, Kawhi Leonard was finally dealt from the Spurs in a blockbuster that sent him north of the border to Toronto along with Danny Green for DeMar DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl, and a protected first-round pick.
The move was a stunner, given that talks seemed all but as the Spurs weren’t getting the offers back they wanted for Leonard. However, at some point the Raptors were willing to create the package around DeRozan and San Antonio couldn’t pass up the chance to get an All-Star under contract for multiple years in return.
The Spurs side of things is the least interesting part of this equation because the expectation is DeRozan will play well for San Antonio and they will continue to be a playoff contender. In Toronto, however, there are serious questions about Leonard joining the squad, particularly the issue of him apparently not wanting to be there.
There were multiple reports, beginning with ESPN’s Chris Haynes, that Leonard didn’t want to play in Toronto. That was followed up by a report from Sporting News’ Sean Deveney that Leonard could potentially consider sitting out the season, but that enters some very murky waters and could lead to some fascinating issues at play regarding the CBA.