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The Toronto Raptors are planning for the future already, despite currently sitting with the first seed in the Eastern Conference, and a big part of that plan is to keep All-Star small forward Kawhi Leonard happy.
Raptors general manager Bobby Webster said the organization has a plan to re-sign Leonard if he does decline his 2019-20 player option with the team.
“Yes [we are keen to keep Leonard],” Webster told TSN 1050. “These are the internal talks and things that we have.”
The team has been cautious with Leonard since acquiring him, but thus far he’s been outstanding on the court, putting up 26.3 points, 8.4 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game while shooting 49.1 percent from the field, 38.1 percent from beyond the arc and 85.9 percent from the free-throw line.
Webster told TSN 1050 that keeping Leonard healthy is a huge priority for the team, as they look to widen their gap for the top spot in the East and make some noise come April in the postseason.
“Obviously, coming into the season he wanted to be healthy, we all need him to be healthy, we all wanted him to play at his best,” Webster said.
“So managing that, as you can imagine, is going to be a huge organizational task and we’ve taken it head on. So I’m really proud of what the organization has done so far and I continue to want to behave in that way going forward.”
Leonard played in just nine games with the San Antonio Spurs last season due to a lingering quadriceps injury, but thus far has seemed happy with his new team North of the border.
We will see if Webster can pull off a deal to keep Leonard in Toronto should he decline his option, or if he likes the situation enough to know a good thing and stay put.