NBA Trade Rumors: Which Teams Will Likely Attempt to Acquire Kawhi Leonard From the San Antonio Spurs This Summer?

Leonard's continued absence from the Spurs is making it seem likely that he will soon be placed on the trading block
Wikimedia Commons/Jose GarciaKawhi Leonard with the San Antonio Spurs during a Feb. 2017 game against the Orlando Magic

About one year ago, the San Antonio Spurs' Kawhi Leonard had emerged as one of the true superstars in the NBA.

Leonard was always one of the best defenders in the league, but last year, he showed that he could also capably handle being the number one option on offense.

The Spurs needed another foundational player to build around with Tim Duncan now in retirement, and they had it in Leonard.

Now, it seems like there's a chance that the Spurs may end up losing Leonard.

Leonard has still only played nine games for the Spurs this season, and there are no guarantees that he will return to the floor even now that the playoffs have begun.

This season-long saga between the Spurs and Leonard continues to befuddle fans and other important people around the league to the point that no one can really tell what is going on and what will happen next.

Still, while the ultimate resolution of this situation remains unclear, there are teams around the league preparing for the possibility that the Spurs may place Leonard on the trading block.

In a recent report, USA Today Sports' Sam Amick shared some information that came from "a person with knowledge of the situation" who revealed that the Los Angeles Clippers are preparing a trade package just in case Leonard ends up being placed on the trading block by his current team.

Amick also noted in that report that Clippers are just "one of the many teams keeping tabs on the situation."

So, who else may be in the process of prepping trade packages for Leonard?

In all likelihood, any team in possession of numerous draft assets and young players will make a play for Leonard.

Per RealGM, the Boston Celtics and Phoenix Suns are two teams that currently hold quite a number of valuable draft picks, and it's easy to see both of those franchises submitting offers for Leonard if he becomes available.

The Celtics are constantly searching for superstars, and they may be amenable to including all or at least most of the draft assets they have and perhaps even some of their young players if that means that they can add a fully healthy Leonard to their roster.

The Suns are going through one of the roughest stretches in their history, and they may look at Leonard as someone who can quickly turn the franchise around. The team may even transform into a legitimate contender if the 26-year-old Leonard can pair well with the Suns franchise guard Devin Booker.

Even the Los Angeles Lakers, a team that currently features some interesting young talents like Brandon Ingram and Kyle Kuzma, could go after Leonard, and the Philadelphia 76ers may also put an offer on the table for the Spurs forward.

The Spurs are likely still hoping that they can hold on to Leonard long-term, but the signs are starting to point to that not happening.

Sometime soon, the Spurs may have no other choice than to trade Leonard and the only consolation for them may be that they could end up receiving some good offers.