Kawhi Leonard could risk fines to sit out season if unhappy with Raptors
Kawhi Leonard is in the process of becoming a member of the Toronto Raptors and even though he’s shown displeasure of landing at The Great North, he would be taking a major risk by sitting out part of the season to show his unhappiness.
According to ESPN’s Zach Lowe, the collective bargaining agreement clearly expresses a player must be fined if he chooses to sit out a game without a legitimate medical reason, family hardship, or any other major life reason to be excused from a game. This could happen as soon as preseason.
Leonard hasn’t been enthused with joining the Raptors, but for the sake of his career (and his pockets), he would be best-served to ride out the season with Toronto and bearing that cross for a full year before taking his talents back to his hometown of Los Angeles.
The 6-foot-7 forward posted 16.2 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 2.3 assists last season through nine games before choosing to sit out due to discomfort with the state of his injured quad.
There’s the belief that the San Antonio Spurs put up with a lot more than they would have for other players, but were unable to substantiate his issues as an injury, given that their medical staff had already cleared him to play and this was based on his own personal level of comfort.
The Raptors are unlikely to have the same patience after trading their best player for Leonard in hopes to shake down the roster and make a run for the Eastern Conference crown after getting swept by the Cleveland Cavaliers the past two postseasons.