L.A.

Lakers rumors: Kawhi Leonard’s addition would ‘significantly increase’ Los Angeles’ chances to land LeBron James

LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard

Reports suggest that the acquisition of the All-Star forward could help better the Lakers’ odds of adding James this summer.

Soobum Im/USA TODAY Sports

Things have continued to heat up on the front for Kawhi Leonard regarding his future with the San Antonio Spurs this offseason after he voiced his desire to be traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. 

There may be an extra incentive for the Lakers to heavily pursue Leonard as Sam Amick of USA TODAY Sports is reporting that the addition of the two-time Defensive Player of the Year would help them land LeBron James this summer. 

If Leonard found his way to Laker Land, where he would likely make it clear that he’d re-sign as a free agent in the summer of 2019, it is widely believed that it would significantly increase the Lakers’ chances of landing LeBron James in free agency this summer. 

When healthy, Leonard has proven to be one of the best players in the league behind his elite ability on both ends of the floor. There are questions lingering around his health given that he missed all but nine games this past season due to a quad injury,  but the possibility of increasing the odds of landing James would be more than enough reason to go this route. 

The Lakers have intriguing young promising talent in Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, Lonzo Ball, and Josh Hart that could be the center of a trade package to land Leonard. San Antonio may not want to move the 26-year-old to Los Angeles, but they may offer the best assortment of talent than other teams. The Boston Celtics could also enter the picture due to being the only other franchise that has just an intriguing mix of young talent and draft picks that they can put in a trade package. 

Nonetheless, this puts more pressure on the Lakers to aggressively pursue Leonard if that means garnering a better shot to land James. This could all lead to a busy next couple of days for Los Angeles that could change the entire state of the franchise. 

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Bob Garcia IV

Staff Writer at Sports Out West
Bob Garcia IV is a sports journalist from Southern California. He's currently the Los Angeles Lakers beat writer for Sports Out West. He is also currently covering the NBA and NFL for ClutchPoints. He was previously the beat writer for LA Rams Report for Scout.com, which is a website dedicated to covering the Rams. Lastly, he was a reporter for the award-winning newspaper, The Daily Sundial, at California State University, Northridge. You can follow him on Twitter, @BGarciaivsports.
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