UPDATE: So much for this: Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting Kawhi is headed to Toronto.
The original story is below.
There’s only one big question left to answer in NBA free agency: What will happen with Kawhi Leonard? Adrian Wojnarowski updated where things stand in a recent story for ESPN.com, and indicated the Wizards are among the teams interested:
Trade talks with several teams continue, with traction slowly, surely gathering with offers for a star insisting that he wants to play for the Los Angeles Lakers. If the Spurs are losing deal leverage, they aren’t operating in a manner that suggests they’re peddling a depreciating asset. San Antonio has been determined in demanding a sizable return on Leonard.
Still, the bidding war among Boston, Philadelphia and the Lakers never materialized. The Los Angeles Clippers, Denver, Phoenix, Portland, Toronto and Washington are among teams who’ve talked with San Antonio, league sources said.
As examples, no Blazers package includes Damian Lillard or CJ McCollum, league sources said. Because Leonard is a player teams fear could be a one-year rental, many offers are modified.
It’s encouraging to see the Wizards trying to get in the mix. Kawhi is awesome when he’s healthy and he would immediately solve the team’s issues closing games.
However, Washington is caught in a tricky spot here. If the Spurs decide to just take whatever they can get, even if teams only treat him as a rental, the other teams listed can probably offer better packages. If Kawhi announces he’s willing to commit long-term to wherever he’s traded, other teams will have better packages in that scenario as well.
The only way the Wizards really have a shot is if they’re willing to take a gamble no one else is, and offer the farm without a firm commitment from Kawhi’s camp on a long-term deal or a full understanding of how healthy he is. Taking that kind of a risk would be an extreme deviation from what the team has done in the past, but in a summer where they’ve shown they’re willing to move away from their plan, we can’t rule it out.