Fresh off leading the Toronto Raptors to their first NBA title and winning his second Finals MVP award, Kawhi Leonard is one of the biggest names in a very star-studded free agency field.
Leonard is sure to be one of the most closely-followed players when free agency kicks off on Sunday night at 6 p.m. ET.
Leonard is expected to meet with a number of teams next week in Los Angeles, including the Lakers and Clippers, and will give his final meeting to the Raptors, according to ESPN. The star reportedly is “strongly considering” a return north of the border, but moving back to roots in Southern California is another strong possibility.
And while the Lakers have believed to be in the running for weeks, the Clippers are another possible landing place if they can find a way to pair Leonard with another star. Who may that star be? According to The Athletic’s Sam Amick, the answer could be Jimmy Butler.
“There are many scenarios seemingly in play, but sources say one in particular looks increasingly possible: Butler teaming up with Leonard on the Clippers,” Amick wrote. “There are strong indications that Leonard is interested in having Butler as a running mate, and it’s the sort of powerful pairing that would certainly vault the Clippers into contention.”
Butler currently is in the middle of rumors linking him to a sign-and-trade to the Houston Rockets, while the Philadelphia 76ers have expressed interest in trying to re-sign the free agent forward.
While Leonard could form a super trio with LeBron James and Anthony Davis in L.A., a Butler-Leonard combo certainly would draw it’s own fair share of buzz.