But the Spurs aren't giving up on their superstar just yet.
Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich traveled to Southern California to meet with Kawhi Leonard on Tuesday ahead of the 2018 National Basketball Association draft Thursday, reports ESPN and Yahoo Sports. Last week, Leonard's camp told reporters that Leonard wants to be traded from the Spurs.
So far, the Spurs have been largely reluctant to give teams guidance on the players, or packages, that would interest them in trades, sources said.
Per a report from Jabari Young of the San Antonio Express-News, it was a "good" meeting. A right quadriceps injury, that saw him miss the first 27 games of the season, ultimately flared back up and saw him miss nearly the entire 2017-18 campaign, and was also the apparent catalyst of the rift that has formed between him and the Spurs organization.
This breakdown in relationship with the Spurs staff is bound to affect his trade value, but in Leonard's mind, it's Lakers or nothing. He has privately maintained that he no longer wants to play in San Antonio, and will eventually alert rival teams considering trades for him that his intention is to sign in Los Angeles - preferably with the Lakers - when he can become a free agent in 2019, league sources said.
The 26-year-old Leonard is entering the final guaranteed year of his contract and is eligible for a supermax extension worth up to $219 million over five years if he stays with San Antonio.
Even despite Leonard's reported feelings, it appears Popovich is still trying to fix the relationship, which fractured at some point during last season.
Leonard and Popovich are expected to have more dialogue going forward, so perhaps the highly respected coach can smooth things over with his star player and convince him to stick around.