Details of LeBron James’ reported pitch to Kawhi Leonard revealed
The Lakers are unsurprisingly pulling out all the stops to convince Kawhi Leonard to join forces LeBron James and Anthony Davis in L.A. While there has been relatively total radio silence on Leonard’s plans in free agency, the pitch LeBron and the Lakers are said to have made to the reigning NBA Finals MVP has been revealed.
During Monday’s edition of “The Woj Pod” show, Ryen Russillo opened up about the whispers he’s hearing on the Leonard-Lakers front, indicating James is playing a role in the recruitment process to some extent.
“The Kawhi pitch, whether it is from the Lakers or LeBron, is this: LeBron is basically saying, ‘Hey, this is going to be your team in two years.’ I have heard this for years, but LeBron at one point wants to play with his son. And depending on when that happens, that is going to be his priority and that may not be with the Lakers,” Russillo said, as transcribed by The Spun. “So, I don’t know when that is going to be and that [is why LeBron is] willing to defer. LeBron is saying for the first time in his basketball life that he is willing to defer the style of play.”
Russillo added that the Lakers will tell Leonard “anything he wants to hear,” including how James’ unselfish style of play would allow the team to run the offense through him, among other things.
The most recent reporting indicates Leonard — perhaps the most private of top-tier NBA superstars — will not rush his decision while determining his immediate NBA future, as it’s believed an announcement may not come until later this week, if not later.
The Lakers are said to be among the favorites, if not the front-runner, to land Leonard, though there remains a possibility the superstar will stay in Toronto and re-up with the Raptors. The Clippers also remain in contention, per reports.
All that said, everything reported suggests the Lakers are major players in the Leonard sweepstakes, though nothing is obviously certain until pen is put to paper.