Around and around we go on the Kawhi Leonard trade rumor carousel.
We know the star forward wants out of San Antonio, and a report surfaced Thursday morning that the Spurs are “fully engaged” with several teams — including the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers — in trade talks involving Leonard.
Leonard reportedly has expressed interest in playing in L.A., either this coming season or in 2018-19 when he becomes a free agent. But what are the chances he comes to Boston?
Still pretty slim, according to The Boston Globe’s Adam Himmelsbach.
The Celtics are dealing from a position of power, as they’ll return Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward to a club that fell one game short of the 2018 NBA Finals. They don’t necessarily need to make a trade, especially if it involves quality assets like Jaylen Brown or Jayson Tatum.
Leonard is one of the top 10 players in the NBA when healthy, but a quad injury that limited him to just nine games last season is cause for concern, and he only has one year remaining on his contract.
According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Boston is well aware of these two potential red flags.
“The Spurs have long been most intrigued with Boston’s trade assets,” Wojnarowski wrote Thursday, “but it remains unclear how rich of a package the Celtics are willing to offer without a full understanding of the long-term implications of Leonard’s quad injury, nor an assurance that they can be certain of Leonard’s willingness to consider a long-term commitment next summer, league sources said.”
It appears the Spurs and Celtics at least have decided to revive negotiations after previous trade talks reportedly “went nowhere.” But Leonard suiting up in Celtic green next season still looks like a long shot.
Thumbnail photo via Soobum Im/USA TODAY Sports
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