The Toronto Raptors and the San Antonio Spurs are on the verge of completing a blockbuster trade what will send Kawhi Leonard to Canada in exchange for DeMar DeRozan. And neither player seems pleased about it.
The deal, which also includes Danny Green heading to Toronto and Jakob Poeltl and a protected 2019 first round pick going back to San Antonio, is a bit of an oddity. DeRozan is a bonafide hero in Toronto, having presided over the best years in Raptors history and being one of the very few All-Star athletes to re-sign with a Toronto team when he hit free agency. Leonard, on the other hand, has just a single year left on his contract and tells anyone who will listen that he plans to sign with the Lakers next summer.
These circumstances, along with the report that Toronto apparently told DeRozan as recently as a week ago that he would not be traded, prompted this reaction from DeMar’s Instagram account:
Let's check in on DeMar DeRozan's Instagram Story right now: pic.twitter.com/frhH6YTiQS
— The Ringer (@ringer) July 18, 2018
“Be told one thing & the outcome another,” DeRozan wrote. “Can’t trust em. Ain’t no loyalty in this game. Sell you out quick for a little bit of nothing.”
“Don’t disturb,” the story concluded.
Leonard doesn’t appear to be pumped about the change of scenery either, even though it seemed impossible he would play the upcoming season for the Spurs after a painful and public break-up with the team over exactly how injured he was last year.
Kawhi Leonard has no desire to play in Toronto, league source tells ESPN.
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) July 18, 2018
DeRozan is the Raptors franchise leader in almost every significant category. Leonard, when healthy, is among the best three or four players in the entire NBA. The Raptors won 59 games in 2017-18, but were swept by LeBron James and the Cavs in the playoffs, leading to them firing their head coach Dwayne Casey (who would later win the Coach of the Year award) and now ship out the face of their franchise.
The NBA is crazy, and we kind of love it.