After being traded to a non-preferred destination on Wednesday, Kawhi Leonard has begun warming up to the idea of playing for the Toronto Raptors, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (h/t TheScore and Sporting News).
Leonard, a five-time NBA All-Star and former NBA champion, reportedly likes the idea of joining an immediate contender where his team can compete with any other franchise for a championship. His first dialogue with the team was said to be good, after original reports suggested he had no interest in playing for the Raptors.
San Antonio and Toronto entered serious discussions on a deal last week, with the two sides reaching agreement early Wednesday morning to exchange DeMar DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl and a 2019 first-round pick for Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green.
Leonard, who became disgruntled in San Antonio during the regular season, had targeted a trade that would allow him to join either the Lakers or Clippers in Los Angeles, according to ESPN.
Leonard will become an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2019, when he’s expected to have multiple suitors. Should an update on Leonard’s situation come, including the new championship odds for his Raptors team, you can also find it here.
Just like the Thunder and Paul George, the Raptors may convince Kawhi Leonard to re-sign with the team in free agency if they impress the Los Angeles native with a successful 2018-19 campaign.