Los Angeles Clippers: Kawhi Leonard shifts the power with one decision

NBA Toronto Raptors Kawhi Leonard (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
NBA Toronto Raptors Kawhi Leonard (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /

With one decision, Kawhi Leonard has shifted the power in the NBA to the Los Angeles Clippers

You can make the argument that Kawhi Leonard didn’t single-handily end three different dynasties – in the San Antonio Spurs, Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors. What you can’t argue is that he didn’t directly impact them.

That’s exactly what he did en route to two NBA Championships – and two NBA Finals MVPs – with two different teams through his young career.

Now, though, he’ll be attempting to create the NBA’s newest dynasty with the Los Angeles Clippers. He officially announced his intent to sign with the Clippers Friday night.

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But, it didn’t end there. Soon after it was announced that Kawhi would sign with the Clippers, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Clippers had also finalized a trade to acquire Paul George.

A move that no question sent a message to the rest of the league – Los Angeles is not just about the Lakers anymore.

While there was hope he would re-sign with the Toronto Raptors, the defending NBA Champions – in the end, the lure of Los Angeles was clearly too much. So was the chance to create something special with the Clippers.

Kawhi demanded a trade from the Spurs last summer and was dealt to Toronto along with Danny Green, in exchange for DeMar DeRozan. Despite his departure, there’s really nothing the Raptors can gripe about. It was always a risk and resulted in an NBA Championship. Kawhi was a hired gun and did exactly what he was asked to do – and then some.

While there will surely be some burned Kawhi jerseys in Toronto – there are not so smart fans in every fan base – they don’t really have anything to be that enraged about.

As for the rest of the league, have at it. We are arguably entering the most wide-open NBA year in history, as there are legitimately 6-8 teams that could win the NBA Championship this year.

The NBA is back in a big way, and the era of the super team is now officially over.

There’s still so much that we don’t know about Kawhi Leonard. He’s one of the biggest mystery that the NBA presents us with. However, there’s one thing that we do know about him and it’s that he’s shifted the power in the NBA, partly in favor of the Clippers. The duo of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George will be a strong one.

Many will crown the Brooklyn Nets this summer – after signing Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant – as the winners of the offseason, but it’s tough to place them ahead of what the Clippers have managed to pull off.

Next. NBA: Winners and losers from day one of free agency. dark

First, they managed to sell Kawhi on their future. They followed that up by pairing him up with Paul George. The Clippers are back…or here.