Basketball: Free agent fireworks set to begin for NBA teams

Basketball: Free agent fireworks set to begin for NBA teams

The trade chatter around San Antonio Spurs All-Star forward Kawhi Leonard has picked up once again just days ahead of the start of the National Basketball Association free agency period.

In order to attempt to sweeten any potential deal they make for Leonard, the Lakers are reportedly attempting to add another future 1st round pick and are willing to take on salary dumps to do so.

Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball (2) defends Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) in the first quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. He's also strongly hinted that he wants to sign with the Lakers when he hits free agency next season, so he could be an expensive one-year rental for whomever wins the Kawhi sweepstakes.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reports that they're fully engaged in trade discussions with multiple teams, including the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics. Although he expressed an interest in signing an extension with the Spurs a summer ago, it's impossible to predict what Irving will do, as he has also mentioned the idea of joining the New York Knicks in 2019.

"Absent the Celtics' willingness to move key young pieces or the Spurs deciding to accept less than what a Leonard without medical or contractual issues is worth", Bulpett wrote, "there seems to be nothing to indicate an agreement". The Spurs want more, however. They may end up being forced to surrender young assets like Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart, future first-round picks and maybe even a sign-and-trade agreement with restricted free agent Julius Randle, according to ESPN.

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As far as who the players might be in this possible trade...

Following the conclusion of the NBA Draft last week, Cleveland general manager Koby Altman said the Cavs have had "good dialogue" with James' management team.

Jordan Schultz of Yahoo Sports reported Thursday that Leonard reached out to James about playing together as well.

"Next summer, if nobody comes and I'm still sitting here like this, then it's a failure", Johnson said.

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