The Kawhi Leonard era finished for the San Antonio Spurs weeks prior. After much quietness previously and from that point forward, Leonard has said his goodbye to the only NBA city he had called home.
In a letter submitted to the San Antonio Express-News, Leonard influenced a point to state to thank you to the Spurs, his previous teammates and mentors and the fan of the team. The previous Finals MVP Leonard and his teammates, Danny Green, were traded by the Spurs to the Toronto Raptors for DeMar DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl and a 2019 first-round draft single out July 18. Leonard as of late presented his letter to the Express-News to express his appreciation to the city and franchise he played for from 2011-18.
I have been going back and forth the last few weeks trying to figure out the right things to say, and it comes down to two simple words: THANK YOU!
My family and I want to say THANK YOU to the entire Spurs organization and the people and fans of San Antonio.
THANK YOU to every one of my teammates I’ve played with over my seven years in the NBA.
THANK YOU Pop I’ll always be grateful for my growth under your guidance.
THANK YOU to the fans! There is not a more passionate or dedicated fan base than what I’ve witnessed in San Antonio.
Through all the ups and downs – I’m glad there were many more ups! – I’ll never forget what we have shared and accomplished together.
While I’m looking forward to the next chapter in my career, I’ll always remember the city and the people of San Antonio! THANK YOU!
– Kawhi Leonard
— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) August 9, 2018
In mid-June, Leonard made it known through the media that he needed a trade from the Spurs. The team worked starting now and into the foreseeable future to bargain Leonard, who is a four-time All-Defensive team member and two-time champ of the Kia Defensive Player of the Year. A few teams – from the Los Angeles Lakers to the Philadelphia 76ers – demonstrated enthusiasm for getting Leonard. At the end of the day, the Spurs sent the All-Star Leonard to the Raptors for fellow All-Star DeRozan, finishing an off-the-court dramatization that once in a while seems to befall the Spurs.