Wednesday, 16 January, 2019

Gregg Popovich's time with Spurs could almost be up

Cleveland Cavaliers USA TODAY Sports Images
Sidney Guerrero | 14 June, 2018, 16:20

History suggests the Spurs could want to see Leonard return to the active lineup before making a super-max offer next year, see him reinvested fully into the program.

Head coach Gregg Popovich and Leonard are expected to meet "sooner than later" to see if repairs can be made to the relationship between the Spurs and their franchise player following a dramatic 2017-18 season.

According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Boston Celtics contacted the Spurs and proposed a trade to them to acquire Kawhi Leonard, but it was turned down.

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Leonard, who finished in third place in 2016-17 MVP voting, is under contract for one more year.

Ultimately, time will tell whether he's going to continue chugging along with the Spurs or if we're in the final year or two of Popovich's tenure on the bench in the National Basketball Association. No details of precisely what the team offered the Spurs were provided. The 26-year-old was reportedly "distant" and "disconnected" from the team during his rehab, which sparked speculation Leonard was considering leaving San Antonio. So perhaps they were interested in trading Leonard, if it were on their own terms. Popovich famously said he was going to retire when Tim Duncan retired, but went back on that plan. To think Popovich will walk into a room after months of discontent and immediately drop that $219 million on Leonard goes against every way the Spurs have operated. The No. 8 pick could help them speed up the rebuilding process and address the areas they need to improve on their roster.

While the Celtics would be more than glad to stay the course with two of the most promising forwards in the league, as well as the reintegration of their two superstars in Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving, acquiring a forward the likes of Leonard must be considered. Family and winning are James' priorities in his next controversial decision.

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