Los Angeles Lakers rumors: Kawhi Leonard to meet with team

(Photo by Mark Blinch/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Mark Blinch/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Recent Los Angeles Lakers rumors involve Kawhi Leonard, who will reportedly now give the team a meeting in free agency.

There have been plenty of Los Angeles Lakers rumors when it comes to free agency. The Lakers are looking to make a splash in free agency to build their roster around LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Kyle Kuzma.

The team took a big step toward adding an impact piece when they cleared even more cap space in a deal with the Washington Wizards. The Lakers are trading Moritz Wagner, Isaac Bonga and Jemerrio Jones to the Wizards, along with a future second-round pick, in a salary dump. That trade gives Los Angeles enough cap space to pursue a max free agent in free agency.

There have been a few players already connected to the Lakers since the Davis trade was announced. Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker and Jimmy Butler were all mentioned, with Walker and Butler being mentioned as the team’s top priorities.

Before the trade with the Wizards, none of those players were in play. Without a max cap slot, the Lakers couldn’t legitimate get in the running for them. However, now that they have the max cap slot, they are a viable option for the top free agents. Another player to keep an eye on is Kawhi Leonard.

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According to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, Leonard will now meet with the Lakers, in addition to the Los Angeles Clippers, when Leonard holds his free agent meetings in Los Angeles next week.

The free agency pitches to Leonard will gain plenty of headlines. With Kevin Durant likely to miss all of the 2019-20 season after rupturing his Achilles, Leonard is easily the best player available in free agency. Whichever team he decides to play for could quickly become title contenders.

There have been reports that Leonard is seriously considering re-signing with the Toronto Raptors, who he just helped lead to an NBA Title. In addition to the Lakers, Clippers and Raptors, the New York Knicks are also working toward getting a meeting with Leonard.

With max cap space now available, the Lakers are smart to pursue Leonard. He would make them easy titles favorites and plenty of veterans looking to win a ring would choose the Lakers.

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However, if Leonard opts to play somewhere else, they should use their cap space to fill out the roster. James, Davis and Kuzma are a strong enough trio to hang with anyone else currently in the NBA. Rounding out the roster with quality depth would be the way to go to truly get back into contender status.