Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard (2) in the second half of an NBA basketball game Sunday, Dec. 16, 2018, in Denver. The Nuggets won 95-86. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

David Zalubowski/Associated Press

If the Los Angeles Lakers pair a second superstar with LeBron James this summer, it likely won’t be Kawhi Leonard. 

Appearing on the Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective Show (h/t RealGM.com), ESPN’s Michael C. Wright said he doesn’t believe Leonard is interested in signing with the Lakers as a free agent. 

“I do not,” Wright said. “That’s just what I’ve been told. It’s what I’ve been told going back to last summer. I don’t see that as something that’s happening. I think he goes to the Clippers.”

This is hardly a new development for the Lakers. Leonard has reportedly had little interest in joining the team since speculation about a union between the two sides began last offseason. 

In July, The Athletic and Stadium’s Shams Charania, then with Yahoo Sports, told Colin Cowherd on The Herd (h/t Travis Durkee of SportingNews.com) that “it’s been made abundantly clear there’s not an interest [from Leonard] to go join a superteam. I don’t think he’s jumping for joy that LeBron James is in L.A. with the Lakers.”

As the Lakers fade from playoff contention with a 30-35 record, the Los Angeles Clippers might seem more appealing for a superstar like Leonard. They’re 37-29 without a true go-to star after trading Tobias Harris to the Philadelphia 76ers in February. Plus, they only have $49.3 million in salary commitments next season, per Basketball Reference

Before Leonard can become a free agent this summer by declining a $21.3 million player option, he will try to help the Toronto Raptors win an NBA title. They own the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference with a 46-19 record. 

Leonard leads the Raptors with 27.0 points per game and ranks second on the team with 7.4 rebounds. 

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