Kawhi Leonard Reportedly Has The Lakers At The Top Of His List Of Trade Destinations

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Lakers fans just found a whole new reason to get excited about a Friday afternoon in June. News broke on Friday that Kawhi Leonard is leaning toward an exit from San Antonio, apparently unable to feel comfortable with the Spurs after an odd and injury-filled season.

With Leonard still under contract and a supermax deal looming large for the former Finals MVP, those outside of San Antonio immediately geared up potential trade talk for the guard.

Shortly after those initial reports, however ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Leonard is hoping for a trade into the Los Angeles area, preferably with the Los Angeles Lakers.

It’s a report that changes the entire landscape of not only the Western Conference but could impact the entire league, starting with free agency in a few weeks. A Lakers team with Kawhi Leonard in the rotation is much more attractive for a veteran player in free agency like, say, LeBron James.

And it would mean the team could conceivably get James even if Paul George does stay in Oklahoma City. George is a free agent target the Lakers have long coveted, but it’s much easier to lure one free agent to town instead of two — not to mention Leonard is an upgrade over George.

This could very well be the reason for Jeanie Buss’s mysterious tweet about never underestimating the Lakers. Nothing has happened just yet, but if Leonard really wants out, he’ll get out one way or another. Wojnarowski did clarify that nothing has been said directly to the Spurs, so this is all just talk.

But it’s the summer now, and talk is all there is to be had. If Kawhi tells the Spurs he wants out, GMs start talking and then it’s a matter of time before Leonard has a new place to play.