"Kawhi conducted himself wonderfully while he was here", Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters in San Antonio while labeling reports he and Leonard were feuding as "ridiculous". Even though Kawhi has made it clear for quite some time that he didn't have any intention of ever suiting up in a Spurs jersey ever again, the moment is still bittersweet for a franchise that finally got to rid themselves of their disgruntled superstar despite the fact that he's a bona fide top 10 all-around player when healthy. Someone I've respected and watched play for awhile now.
Popovich knows that people will always want to hear about the conflict between him and Kawhi, but he's ready to focus on the new players the Spurs just got from the Raptors (DeRozan and Jakob Poeltl) and completely move on from the drama of the past.
And prior to the trade, Leonard has expressed his wishes to play in Los Angeles, preferably for the Lakers.
However, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, Leonard is warming to the idea of playing for the Raptors this season.
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Two years ago, no one would have considered making the argument that DeRozan is a more valuable player than Leonard.
Plus, the Lakers didn't have the sort of assets the Spurs would have wanted for an elite player like Leonard. We wish him well, but at this point, it's time to move on.
Toronto fired Dwane Casey, the league's coach of the year, after another playoff flop against Cleveland.
Toronto is improved, but enough? Danny Green will be missed. "It's a gamble, but Toronto is probably at the point where, 'We've probably only got one more run with this team anyhow so let's mix it up.' And if they have to rebuild or retool, they could do it without the [$83] million they owe DeRozan".