Fred VanVleet said on Sunday that there was nothing the Toronto Raptors could do to convince Kawhi Leonard to sign up again with the team, but he and several of his teammates voiced their opposition. hope that the most useful player of the finals of the NBA decides to return.
Leonard, who led the Raptors to a win in the six-game NBA final against the Golden State Warriors in his first season in Toronto, is expected to pull out of the final year of his contract and become a free agent.
"I think for us, there is nothing left to do, we did it.The city did it.This franchise did it. My team mates did it.We did our best The best way to recruit someone is just to stay yourself during the year, and I guess he knows what is here and what makes this place a special place, "VanVleet said during the team's first broadcast since the NBA Title's victory.
"If it's enough that's enough.If that's not the case, it's not … we would all like it to be back and s & # 039; He's not doing it, we'll move on to something else.This is not the biggest deal in the world.He came here and did what he was supposed to do.He therefore offered this city a champion title and I think he has won his freedom and his career to do what he wants, and we will respect all and admire him. "
VanVleet added that if Leonard "is part of another team, we just have to kick our ass next year", which made the journalists laugh.
"I hope he'll come back," he says.
Raptors striker Pascal Siakam said of Leonard that the Raptors "absolutely want him back."
Center Marc Gasol said on Sunday that Leonard's elite two-man game made him "one of a kind". "I do not think there is another player of his caliber currently in the NBA," Gasol said. "He's alone on a pedestal." With such status, his long-time teammate, Danny Green, said that Leonard's decision would be certain to have an effect on the NBA's drive.
"Let's not be stupid," Green said. "His decision affects a lot of men's decisions, it can change an entire organization."
Raptors president Masai Ujiri is also speculative, linked to an offer from Washington Wizards. Ujiri, who was not available on Sunday, is scheduled to speak at the Monday parade, which will end at the square in front of Toronto City Hall.
Even after a year together, Raptors coach Nick Nurse said he had no idea of Leonard's direction.
"I do not really know," says the nurse. "I know that he has to make a decision here very soon, in a few weeks, I think he's had a good season and that people like him here, and we can make him a good deal. & # 39; & # 39;
Gasol may also withdraw from the last year of his contract, while Green, a free agent, said he hoped to return.
Associated Press contributed to this report.