The Toronto Raptors are close to acquiring disgruntled superstar Kawhi Leonard from the San Antonio Spurs according to a report from ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.
Toronto is close to a deal to acquire Spurs All-Star Kawhi Leonard, league sources tell @ChrisBHaynes and me. Trade package includes DeMar DeRozan, league sources tell ESPN.- Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 18, 2018
It was reported on Tuesday that the Raptors made a compelling offer for the former Finals MVP and it may have been enough to sway the Spurs into finally ending the season-long drama between them and their superstar.
As part of the package, the Raptors would include four-time all-star DeMar DeRozan who according to Wojnarowski is aware of the impending deal.
Talks between the Spurs and Raptors have picked up over the last few days according to Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports. The deal is said to be in the final stage and only a snag late could prevent completion of the transaction.
Leonard has reportedly been adamant that he would like to play in Los Angeles for the Lakers of Clippers once he hits the open market in 2019, and he hasn't expressed any intention to sign long-term with the Raptors if a deal is reached for his services.
ESPN's Chris Haynes reports that Leonard has no desire to play in Toronto.
Kawhi Leonard has no desire to play in Toronto, league source tells ESPN.- Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) July 18, 2018
The Boston Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers have also been rumoured in the running for Leonard, but over the past week, most in NBA front offices believed that Toronto were in the best position to offer the Spurs a hefty package.
Charania also reports that DeRozan has expressed his displeasure towards the thought of being traded for Leonard after being notified of the potential move late Tuesday night. Wojnarowski adds that DeRozan was told he would not be traded when he met with the Raptors' front office while in Las Vegas for Summer League.
DeRozan has three years remaining on his contract and he'd be on the books for $83 million. The deal has an opt-out option in 2020-21.
If the deal is reached the Raptors would be getting the services of one of the best two-way players in the game when healthy.
Leonard averaged 16.2 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game in just nine appearances after dealing with a nagging quad injury all of 2017-18.