Report: Raptors to hold introductory press conference for Kawhi Leonard

Dan Feldman
NBC Sports

All eyes will be on Kawhi Leonard next season, which itself will be interesting (let alone all the reasons people be watching him – his return from injury, him trying to lead the contending Raptors, his impending free agency).

Leonard is notoriously reserved, and this level of attention will be a change for him. We’ll get our first taste of how he’ll handle it soon.

Josh Lewenberg of TSN:


Leonard hasn’t spoken publicly since March. Plenty has gone down since – a controversial team meeting, harsh words from his then-San Antonio teammates, the Spurs finishing their season without him, Leonard meeting with Gregg Popovich, San Antonio trading him and more. And then there are forward-looking questions about how Leonard feels about Toronto and Los Angeles, specifically the Lakers and Clippers.

Suffice it to say, there’s plenty to ask Leonard about.

I’m a little surprised Leonard will address reporters in a setting like this. He’d always have talk at media day, but a separate press conference will shine a brighter spotlight on him. He didn’t have to do this. LeBron James never had an introductory press conference with the Lakers. If Leonard wanted to skip this event, the Raptors – trying to appeal to him over the next year – would have accommodated him.

Still, I expect short, unilluminating answers from Leonard. But I’ll certainly watch just in case he reveals more.

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