Kawhi Leonard Wants To Leave San Antonio, Eyes Los Angeles Or Cleveland

San Antonio Spurs guard Danny Green right stands at the bench with injured teammates Kawhi Leonard second from left and Rudy Gay center during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pa

The Spurs don't have to trade Leonard, and they may not want to send him to a Western Conference team.

Leonard was supposed to meet with Spurs coach Gregg Popovich this week to resolve tension that arose during the All-Star's lengthy absence last season due to quadriceps tendinopathy, which limited him to just nine games. It was through the media that Leonard and his representatives found out San Antonio didn't like the move via "unnamed sources".

However, it turns out that all was not well down by the Riverwalk.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers are Leonard's preferred destinations. There was some speculation as to whether or not Phoenix would want him for the number one overall pick, but it doesn't seem to make much sense.

Leonard was also absent from the Spurs bench during the first-round match-up with the Golden State Warriors.

Although Leonard is interested in heading to Los Angeles and joining the Lakers, there's just no proof that Magic Johnson would be interested in parting with his young core.

On the other hand, I can't see the Spurs making a trade with Cleveland. Lonzo Ball has seemingly been at the center of a trade package to get the San Antonio star but the guys argue that the Spurs are already set at point guard with veteran Tony Parker as well as young Dejounte Murray.

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The fact that the Spurs are at least considering a move involving the Lakers could be all L.A. needs to get a deal done. Leonard spent most of the second half of the season rehabbing his injury in NY, where his medical team was based and where he trained with Spurs staffers. The team last made the playoffs in the 2012-2013 NBA Season. It was a disaster and while I'm not comparing Leonard to Bynum in no ways because one is a supremely better player. He's one of basketball's premier two-way players and while durability has been a question mark, there's little doubt about the impact he makes when healthy.

The Spurs were reduced to giving only cryptic answers about Leonard's status.

The primary issue for Boston would be whether or not they can convince Kawhi to re-sign.

On Friday, ESPN posted a story about the seven best trades for Kawhi Leonard. "If something happens relative to the draft, it's going to be because they heard something directly from [Leonard] and not the things that we've heard [in various reports]". Sending Kawhi off to work under James Dolan would also fulfill any potential desire for revenge that might rest in R.C. Buford's heart. In 407 career games with the Spurs, Leonard averaged 16.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.8 steals.

Leonard is eligible for a five-year, $215 million contract extension from the Spurs this offseason.

The Kawhi Leonard saga has reached the next level. They might not have the glamor of Los Angeles or the enticing treasure trove of assets like the Celtics. This team has the most assets for a trade. They still need another superstar in order to compete with the Boston Celtics in the eastern conference. Markelle Fultz nearly has to be featured in the deal.

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