One name to keep an eye on if you’re hoping to watch dominoes fall as they topple over regarding Kawhi Leonard’s free agency decision: Danny Green. By all accounts, just like the rest of us, he’s waiting to see what Leonard does, but has a few finalists in mind: The Dallas Mavericks, Toronto Raptors, or the Los Angeles Lakers.
And no anonymous sources had to say so. Green announced as much himself on his own podcast’s Twitter account. This is certainly a solid way to drum up subscriber numbers:
After day three of Free Agency, these 3 teams, in no particular order, are in the mix for Danny. You get to be General Manager, what are you telling @DGreen_14 ?— Inside The Green Room (@GreenRoomInside) July 2, 2019
Keep an eye out to this account and @HarrisonSanford for any updates. pic.twitter.com/RWcQuQq3OP
So if you’re trying to find tea leaves to read, the fact he hasn’t re-signed with Toronto or moved on to Dallas might signal that the Lakers are still very much in the running for Leonard — though we already knew that.
It’s really hard to see him landing in Dallas if he really is waiting on Leonard. All three of the teams still in the running for Leonard (the Lakers, Clippers and Toronto) could add Green after signing Leonard, so Dallas’ fit in this equation is a bit confusing.
Obviously depending on what it costs to sign Green (likely at a shade under $5 million should the Lakers use their room exception on him), he would be a tremendous fit. Yes, we started to see a slide in his production during these last playoffs, but he is a solid defender who also spaces the floor. Anyone who watched last year’s Lakers probably knows how desperately they need guys who can one or both of those things.
You can really start to see those priorities, though, given the others moves the Lakers have already made even while they wait for Leonard. Troy Daniels and Jared Dudley are both solid veterans who space the floor. The Lakers have also been speculatively linked to Kyle Korver and will likely figure into the discussion should JR Smith get waived in Cleveland.
No, Andre Iguodala isn’t going to set the world on fire with his shooting stroke, but he can definitely still defend and, should he get bought out by the Memphis Grizzlies, he’d be a welcome addition as well.
Add Green to that list and the roster might really come together — though it would be nice to see them add a point guard at some point.
The other thing to monitor here is that if Green does all-of-a-sudden sign with one of the other two teams listed, then you’ll likely know shortly thereafter that the Lakers missed out on Leonard — though technically speaking, if Green signs with Dallas, that could just mean Leonard isn’t returning to Toronto and Green wanted to cash in with Dallas. The longer he stays available, the more likely it is that Leonard is still on the market.
All this is to say that even while Leonard takes his time, should he make his decision and come to the Lakers, they’ll easily have the means to fill out the roster. But please, for the love of all things holy, let’s hope he stops taking his time.
For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. Here is a list of every free agent credibly connected to the Lakers so far.