NBA Season Preview Series – Part 13

As we mentioned in Part 1 of this series, we will be previewing the NBA season by ranking the clubs in reverse order and revealing those clubs two at a time. Here’s what those rankings look like at this point:
30. Atlanta Hawks
29. Sacramento Kings
28. Orlando Magic
27. Phoenix Suns
26. Chicago Bulls
25. New York Knicks
24. Brooklyn Nets
23. Charlotte Hornets
22. Memphis Grizzlies
21. Dallas Mavericks
20. Cleveland Cavaliers
19. Los Angeles Clippers
18. Detroit Pistons
17. Miami Heat
16. Washington Wizards
15. Minnesota Timberwolves
14. Portland Trail Blazers
13. San Antonio Spurs
12. Denver Nuggets
11. Milwaukee Bucks
10. Indiana Pacers
9. New Orleans Pelicans
8. Los Angeles Lakers
7. Oklahoma City Thunder

Here are the next two clubs:

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Kawhi Leonard Traded to Raptors

Yesterday, in something of a rarity within the NBA, two top players were traded for each other, along with some other flotsam to balance out the trade:

The San Antonio Spurs finally met the request of superstar wing Kawhi Leonard to be traded, though they may not have given him exactly what he wanted. Reports were that Leonard wanted to be traded to one of the Los Angeles teams – the Lakers were seen as his preferred team even before LeBron James took his talents to Inglewood – and the Spurs instead shipped him north to Toronto, a solid team that always seemed to meet its demise each season at the hands of LeBron.
Though Leonard missed the bulk of last season – he played in only 9 games – due to a quadriceps injury that was at the root of his discontent with the Spurs, he is still considered a top player in the league, and the hope for all fans of the NBA is that he can return to his pre-injury form. This is a player that has finished in the top five in MVP voting: third after the 2017 season (behind Russell Westbrook and James Harden) and second after the 2016 season (behind Stephen Curry).

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