When the San Antonio Spurs dealt veteran point guard George Hill for the rights to swingman Kawhi Leonard, a lot of eyebrows were raised. However, Hill has had been widely criticized as of late while Leonard has developed into an excellent player, even winning MVP of the NBA Finals this summer.
Jabari Davis refers to Leonard as a “coach’s dream.”
When you’ve already won the NBA Finals MVP trophy, there aren’t many goals left that you can strive to achieve. Don’t tell Kawhi Leonard that, as the three-year player reportedly didn’t even take the allotted time he was given to enjoy the Larry O’Brien trophy while it was in his possession for a few days, opting to leave it in his condo so that he could continue working out. Dedication and focus of that nature could perhaps be attributed to the rampant professionalism the Spurs are known for, but Leonard truly is just a different type of guy. Leonard is a coach’s dream as a young player with an evolving skill-set and great attitude, with none of the excess stuff that generally detracts from progress.
Leonard, who has been universally praised since winning finals MVP, will likely get his due with a max contract next year.
Leonard averaged 12.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.7 steals and 0.8 blocks per game while shooting 52.2% from the field, 37.9% from beyond the arc and 80.2% from the free throw line. In the playoffs, he put up 14.2 points, 6.7 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.7 steals and 0.6 blocks per game while shooting 51.0% from the floor, 41.9% from three and 73.6% from the charity stripe.
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