When Kawhi Leonard was traded from the Spurs to the Raptors it left a lot of unanswered questions. Why did such a good relationship between San Antonio and Leonard have to end, could nothing really fix it, and how many people did Leonard speak to before making his decision to request a trade?
One person we know he didn't talk to was Spurs legend, David Robinson. The Admiral made an appearance on ESPN's The Jump and spoke with Rachel Nichols about Leonard's decision to leave the Spurs. Robinson told Nichols that he tried to talk to Leonard multiple times, but he could never get in contact with the disgruntled star.
David Robinson tells me Kawhi Leonard’s departure from San Antonio is “one of the oddest situations I’ve seen since I’ve been in pro basketball." He says he tried to reach out to Kawhi several times in recent months, but never got an answer back. pic.twitter.com/k4mNiqGxQM— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) July 23, 2018
Here's more from Robinson:
Has anybody spoke to Kawhi about this? I talked to his uncle. Does that count? He's a hard guy. He's just quiet. I've reached out to him several times and just never hear anything back from him. I think the whole time he's been here I've talked him maybe a handful of times. I can count on maybe one hand the amount of words he's said to me.
It sounds like Robinson tried to get in contact with Leonard, but was never able to speak to him directly. In most cases with Leonard that seems to be the norm, because, as Robinson said, he's such a quiet person, but it also speaks to how disinterested Leonard appeared to be in fixing his relationship with the Spurs organization.
It's become very clear over the last year, as the relationship between Leonard and the Spurs fell apart, that nobody was going to convince Leonard to stay. Leonard spoke to Gregg Popovich in San Diego last month and it was shortly after that San Antonio began taking trade calls for him. If not even Popovich could get through to Leonard, and Robinson couldn't even get in contact with him, then his mind was set. The only thing the Spurs could do from that point was trade him.