Kawhi Leonard is an exceptional NBA player at the peak of his powers. Any team would love to have him on the roster, but dealing with his uncle, Dennis Robertson, is another story.
Reports of the difficulty in dealing with Uncle Dennis throughout Leonard’s free agency surfaced again Wednesday.
Josh Lewenberg, the Toronto Raptors beat reporter for TSN, cited sources in an article that said Leonard’s camp, namely Robertson, made several requests that were “unreasonable” during the Raptors negotiations with the former Spurs all-star forward.
The Raptors were one of three teams believed to be in the running to sign Leonard.
But according to the report, the Raptors and general manager Masai Ujiri began to suspect Leonard was not interested in signing a long-term deal with them after Leonard’s camp asked for things that players “do not generally ask for” during negotiations.
Another interesting quote stands out from Lewenberg’s reporting.
When asked if he felt Leonard and his camp were up front during the process, Ujiri replied, “I think he was. Kawhi was.”
Leonard ultimately signed with the Los Angeles Clippers and, in a stunning move, convinced fellow all-star Paul George to ask for a trade from Oklahoma City to join him in Southern California.
Much like his play on the court, Leonard turned out to be a silent assassin off the court as well.
Spurs fans can take solace in the fact that Leonard most likely was always going to leave San Antonio. Uncle Dennis is also a sore and tired subject in San Antonio.
There is still a shroud of mystery surrounding what happened with Leonard and the Spurs organization, but as time passes, there are more details that reveal what the Spurs front office was up against.
It was likely always going to be a no-win situation for San Antonio. With a mix of youth and veteran players, the Spurs have bounced back and there is hope for the future.
Leonard delivered a championship to Toronto. That’s what should matter the most, but once again, his camp has left behind more questions and hard feelings on its trek to Los Angeles.