Nonetheless, another Western Conference executive said teams are “lining up to try to do something” in the event the Spurs decide to trade Leonard this summer. Through back channels, those teams have gotten the brush-off from the Spurs.
Not doing so wouldn’t mean they have trade him immediately. He’s still under contract through next season, and they’d still have a financial advantage in re-signing him in 2019 (including the super-max salary if he makes an All-NBA team next season).
But if San Antonio and Leonard don’t agree on a contract extension this offseason, expect the Spurs to take those trade calls more seriously. Again, that doesn’t mean they’ll trade him. But exploring potential deals would become much more logical.