Outside of whether Pat Riley can move Hassan Whiteside, perhaps the biggest question surrounding the Miami Heat entering the offseason is if they have a chance to acquire Kawhi Leonard, if the Spurs decide it’s time to trade the 6-foot-7 forward.
Leonard and the Spurs have been in a bizarre standoff most of the season over a quad injury with coach Gregg Popovich having given up on Leonard playing by the end of the season.
All of which has led to speculation that San Antonio is ready to move on from the 26-year-old who has twice been named All-NBA first team and Defensive Player of the Year.
If the situation is irreparable, and the Spurs put Leonard on the market, can the Heat get in the conversation?
One Las Vegas book does not think so. In fact, the Heat aren’t even on their board.
Bovada still has San Antonio at the top of the list of teams Leonard could be on when next season starts. But if Leonard is moved eight teams appear on the board with the best odds going to Philadelphia and the longest to Charlotte and Milwaukee.
Here is the list:
San Antonio Spurs: 5/8:
Philadelphia 76ers: 9/2:
Los Angeles Lakers: 13/2:
Los Angeles Clippers: 7/1:
Boston Celtics: 11/1:
Cleveland Cavaliers: 12/1:
New York Knicks: 14/1:
Charlotte Hornets: 15/1:
Milwaukee Bucks: 15/1:
The Heat’s issue is most of the teams mentioned have young, budding talent or a perennial All-Star or an attractive draft choice to offer the Spurs. With Riley saying that nobody is untouchable this summer, the Heat might be able to get into the game by offering a combination of their top young players – Bam Adebayo, Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow – or perhaps all three, along with their 2019 first-round pick. But that still probably isn’t enough.
If the Spurs trade Leonard, it has been reported they prefer it would not be to a Western Conference team. But that only knocks out the Lakers and Clippers.
Leonard, who is owed $21 million next season and $21.3 million in 2019-20, played nine games last season because of a mysterious quad injury that Leonard’s camp is saying is a contusion and not a long-term issue.
ESPN reported the Spurs believe Leonard’s group is trying to get Leonard moved to a large market like Los Angeles or New York or Philadelphia.