If the Cleveland Cavaliers want franchise star LeBron James to stick around for next season, they'll certainly have to upgrade an otherwise flawed roster, and it looks like GM Koby Altman is trying to do just that.
According to ESPN's Zach Lowe, the Cavaliers have offered All-Star forward Kevin Love and the eighth overall pick in 2018 to the San Antonio Spurs for Kawhi Leonard. But that hasn't been enough to tempt the Spurs into parting with the 2014 NBA Finals MVP and champion, so the Cavaliers are going to have to offer more.
Leonard was hampered by a quad injury in 2017-18 and only appeared in nine games. Despite reports that he was good to play again, Leonard opted to sit out - which reportedly led to him having heat with head coach Gregg Popovich and other Spurs players. Leonard requested a trade last week and apparently prefers to play for the Los Angeles Lakers or the Clippers, both hometown teams.
The Spurs have to be tempted by a king's ransom, however. Leonard is a top-five player in the NBA when healthy, and he's undoubtedly the league's best when it comes to defense. As such, the Cavaliers probably aren't close to landing Leonard in a trade - unless they can find more pieces to part with.
As for the Cavaliers, the Kyrie Irving trade failed miserably, and the rest of the roster failed to help out James and Love during the 2018 playoffs. After being swept by the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, it was evident the Cavs need one or two more stars if they want to win a second title.
Landing Kawhi Leonard would make them much more built to handle the Warriors, given his slick defense and complete all-around game. But if the Cavaliers are unable to land Leonard, Altman will have to desperately look elsewhere as he tries to build a team that can win next year - with or without LeBron.
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