But should they miss out on Leonard to either their Staples Center neighbors or the Raptors, they've maximized their ability to add talent via free agency with their latest moves.
On Tuesday morning, Raptors president of basketball operations Masai Uriji used a nationally televised media conference to describe what, in essence, were Plan A and Plan B, linking the futures of such players as Green and veteran centre Marc Gasol to what happens with Leonard. "I can't say, with ownership here, we haven't discussed that honestly per se but maybe it's the future now, we won a championship we can demand more", Ujiri said ... "He challenges me the same way that I challenge him".
Leonard is expected to decline his player option and become an unrestricted free agent. We've also picked out the Top 20 potential free agents so you can start figuring out which players fit your team best.
If he re-signs, BTMI will offer Leonard return flights strictly from Toronto and accommodations at the resort. "But he knows who we are and I think that's the benefit of doing the deal a year early, to have that opportunity for him to come to this city, come to this organization and get a sense of who we were".
"So for us, there's that trust regardless of wherever it goes".
"I think I'll leave that between me and Kyle", Ujiri said. Able to function as a secondary ball-handler and attacker who can also step back and reliably space the floor, Leonard's versatility gives the offense an entirely different look and gives them even more ways to overcome an opposing defense.
"He's a confident human being, he's an unbelievable person, he is his own person". "My family loves it here".
"My kids are Canadians", he said.
As Ujiri approached the court after the Raptors defeated the Golden State Warriors, he was stopped by a sheriff's deputy for not displaying the proper credential to access the court, according to a spokesman for the Alameda County Sheriff's Office. "For now, I'll just respect their process there and wait for the next steps". "For me, the blessing is being wanted here and finding a place that makes you happy and finding challenges that really make you grow as a person".
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