Dallas Mavericks, Miami Heat Expected to Make “Hard Push” for Leonard
Is Kawhi Leonard going to remain in Los Angeles?
After yet another disappointing finish to their season, the Los Angeles Clippers will have some important questions to answer prior to the start of next year.
Leonard, who missed the entirety of the team’s Conference Finals series against the Phoenix Suns is expected to exercise his player option this offseason and become a free agent. While the belief across the industry is that Kawhi Leonard will remain with the Clippers, there are a couple of teams ready to make a hard push for the former Finals MVP.
Executives consider the Mavs the most serious threat to land Kawhi Leonard in the offseason.
• Presence of Luka Doncic
• Ability to create maximum cap space
• Good relationship with Mavs' GM Nico Harrison
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) July 1, 2021
According to Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer, the Miami Heat and the Dallas Mavericks are expected to pursue the superstar forward once free agency kicks off, assuming the player option is exercised. The Mavs are believed to be the most serious threat to land Leonard due to a combination of Luka Doncic’s emergence, the organization’s ability to create max cap space, and Leonard’s pre-existing relationship with Nico Harrison.
Leonard is believed to have a close relationship with Jimmy Butler and while the Heat do not have the cap space this offseason to sign Leonard as a free agent, they are very open to facilitating a sign-and-trade.
The pressure falls squarely on the Clippers this offseason to not only re-sign Leonard but to build a championship team around him.