Kawhi Leonard has reportedly cleared a major hurdle in his return to the court, as he has passed his physical with the Toronto Raptors. The star forward, who was involved in a blockbuster trade between the Raptors and San Antonio Spurs, played just nine games last season as he battled a quadriceps injury.
The fallout from the injury–and how the Spurs handled his malady–led to a standoff between the two parties that resulted in the trade. Despite missing most of the 2017-18 season–and being forced to leave the 2017 Western Conference Finals with a severe ankle sprain–Leonard is set to return to action.
In addition, Danny Green also passed his physical with the Raptors, making the trade official. The Raptors traded DeMar DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl, and a protected first-round pick to the Spurs.
Both Leonard and Green project as starters and Toronto hopes that it can showcase its team and city in an attempt to convince Leonard to stay there for the foreseeable future.
Leonard last played in an NBA game on Jan. 13.
By joining Kyle Lowry, Serge Ibaka, Jonas Valanciunas, and a solid bench, the two prospective Toronto starters should elevate the Raptors to one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference. Toronto has repeatedly been unable to overtake LeBron James in the East, going so far as the Eastern Conference Finals. However, the acquisition of Leonard and LeBron James’ migration to the Western Conference should position Toronto well for a run to the Finals.
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