The National Basketball Association’s offseason is going full-tilt and the player movement has only begun. While the big named free agents were locked in pretty quickly, either jumping ship or re-upping, teams are getting around to signing the Restricted Free Agents. The Bulls resigned Zach Lavine after he was offered a deal by the Kings and Jabari Parker may be headed to Chicago as well as the Bucks are strapped for cash. Marcus Smart is still waiting for offers.
Rodney Hood, Montrezl Harrell and Clint Capela are as well. There are still a ton of moves that could be made but, since Lebron has signed with the Lakers, the biggest remaining question is what happens to Kawhi Leonard.
Leonard and the Spurs are in a bad situation. It really came out of nowhere earlier this season and no one really seems to know how or why these two parties are where they are. Long story short, Kawhi wants out. The Spurs are obviously going to have to accommodate him as Kawhi has proven he will sit out games if he has to. Rumor has it, he wants to go to the Lakers and play with Lebron. Sure, what player doesn’t want to do that but why in the world would the Spurs want to do that? Making that trade would allow the Lakers to beat the hell out of the Spurs for the foreseeable future. No dice. So another standoff has begun and now the oddsmakers have chimed in. Let’s have a look at where he could go and how it could payout.
Even – A newer entry into the conversation and coming in as the favorite, you gotta admit, the Raps make a lot of sense. They play in the East and the Spurs definitely want Leonard as far away as possible. Toronto has the talent to send back if they want to dump Demar Derozan. The way the playoffs ended last year with Derozan on the bench at the end of games indicates it is probably time to move on. This one makes sense and if they can get the money right, expect the Spurs to pull the trigger. The odds makers nailed the Lebron to the Lakers thing way before anyone else so keep that in mind.
San Antonio Spurs +400
Another strong contender no one really wants to see. If Leonard isn’t moved, it is only a matter of time before he leaves and every moment he is there, it hurts the Spurs. The Spurs will be motivated to get a deal done but that doesn’t mean the rest of the NBA will have to cooperate. This is a tough deal to put together and things can fall apart very easily hence +400 is a good number
Los Angeles Lakers +500
The only way this deal could happen is via a three or even four team deal. It is what Leonard wants but, considering his behavior this past season, I don’t see a reason why the Spurs would consider his feelings. With that many teams and the large contracts that would be needed, not to mention the talent that would have to come back, it will be tough to make happen.
Los Angeles Clippers +600
This is another good fit for everyone. Leonard will be in southern California where he wants to be. The Spurs will be rid of him without forming a super team for their competition. And the Clips get a star player again to play with Lou Williams after losing Chris Paul and Blake Griffin. The Clippers will have to give up a lot though in terms of future picks with no guarantee Leonard resigns after a year. A tough call but an easier deal to make for the teams involved.
Boston Celtics +800
The Celtics always show up in this speculatory conversations because they have everything a deal needs. They have salary cap flexibility, they have a gang of young proven talent, and they have the guts to make a deal happen. The Spurs desperately want to get something out of the deal and a few of those guys would make great building blocks for the Spurs future. At +800, this is the type of longshot to take a flyer on.