Kawhi Leonard Wants to Stay in San Antonio, Danny Green Says

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 25, 2018

SAN ANTONIO, TX - MARCH 4: Kawhi Leonard #2 and Danny Green #14 of the San Antonio Spurs high five each other during the game against the Minnesota Timberwolves on March 4, 2017 at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photos by Mark Sobhani/NBAE via Getty Images)
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San Antonio Spurs shooting guard Danny Green said Friday teammate Kawhi Leonard told him he wants to remain with the organization amid speculation about his future.  

Green discussed Leonard's status during an appearance on ESPN's Get Up, and said the 2014 NBA Finals MVP "verbally" expressed his desire to stay with the Spurs:

Leonard was limited to nine appearances during the 2017-18 season because of a lingering quad injury.

The situation created a rift between the 26-year-old superstar and the franchise, including longtime head coach Gregg Popovich, who would often refer questions about the small forward's availability to his "group."

"You'll have to ask Kawhi and his group that question," Popovich told reporters in April. "So far, they say that he's not ready to go. So we can't do anything until that happens. Then, we would have to decide what's going on from there. But that's the first thing that has to happen."

San Antonio was eliminated by the reigning champion Golden State Warriors in the first round of the playoffs. Since then, there's been a variety of reports about Leonard's future.

In early May, Ramona Shelburne and Michael C. Wright of ESPN.com reported the Spurs were concerned "Leonard's group has an ulterior motive to fray the relationship" in order to push for a trade to a larger market, such as Los Angeles, New York City or Philadelphia.

Leonard hasn't publicly commented on whether he wants to stay with the Spurs.

San Antonio doesn't have a ton of time to seek a solution. The 2018-19 campaign is the final guaranteed year of the two-time Defensive Player of the Year's contract, per Spotrac. He can decline a player option to become a free agent next summer if an extension agreement isn't reached before then.

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