Last night, ESPN's own Ramona Shelburne and Adrian Wojnarowski reported last night that the San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Lakers had begun exploratory trade talks. The block came at a crucial juncture late in the 2016 NBA Finals and provides some hint at the peerless basketballing instincts that fuels James' greatness; in slow-motion footage of the play, he seemingly knows what the Warriors are doing before they do. With Leonard adamant about joining the Lakers either now or as a free agent in 2019, the Spurs don't have much leverage.
As of July 2, over 24 hours into the start of free agency, the Spurs have not traded Leonard.
George opted out of his contract with Oklahoma City on Thursday and James has until Friday to decide if he'll stay with the Cavaliers.
The Los Angeles Lakers are reportedly discussing a trade for Kawhi Leonard with the San Antonio Spurs, with the hopes that landing Leonard will get them LeBron James in free agency.
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According to Tim Bontemps of the Washington Post, "The question now is whether the Lakers even have enough to convince the Spurs to send Leonard there". Others competing for his signature can only offer a four-year contract worth $152 million.
"Whenever anyone says anything about another individual or about the quality of another individual, or what they're doing, I think the first thing to look at is the substance and gravitas of the source that speaks", he told ESPN.com in January about LaVar's criticism of Lakers coach Luke Walton.
James just completed his 15th National Basketball Association season and it may have been his best yet.
The 76ers won 52 games last season. The Lakers are considered strong candidates to sign James, but he also has an offseason home in L.A.