The San Antonio Spurs have held Kawhi Leonard trade talks with the Los Angeles Clippers, Denver Nuggets, Phoenix Suns, Portland Trail Blazers, Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards, according to Adrian Wojnarowski and Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com.
Wojnarowski and Shelburne also reported that the Spurs have been "determined in demanding a sizable return," saying: "If the Spurs are losing deal leverage, they aren't operating in a manner that suggests they're peddling a depreciating asset."
But it appears teams are reluctant to part with a star in exchange for Leonard, who will be a free agent after the 2018-19 season and has indicated he wants to eventually play for the Los Angeles Lakers. He's also coming off an injury-plagued season, and there's uncertainty over his level of health.
That's a lot of risk to endure, alongside the reality that Leonard is forcing his way out of the Spurs organization, one of the most respected franchises in American sports.
As Wojnarowski and Shelburne reported, the Blazers haven't offered Damian Lillard or CJ McCollum. The Sixers, meanwhile, aren't interested in parting with Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons or Markelle Fultz, while Boston has kept Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward and Al Horford out of trade talks with San Antonio.
Per that report, Philly and Boston have offered "pick-heavy packages that haven't moved the Spurs." San Antonio wants "an All-Star-caliber player, high-potential young players and draft assets" in return for Leonard.
Teams can afford to slow play negotiations, a tactic the Spurs themselves will likely employ. The reality for San Antonio, however, is that Leonard's value likely won't get higher than it is this summer. Even if he is still with the Spurs during the season and plays well upon his return, teams aren't going to give up major assets for a potential half-season rental.
Getting Leonard for an entire season is far more appealing and would give the organization that deals for him a year to pitch him on remaining long-term, much as the Oklahoma City Thunder did with Paul George. Thus, the Spurs have a soft deadline, and may need to eventually consider that the best offer they get this summer is the best offer they are likely to get, period.