Kawhi Leonard of Toronto Raptors breaks silence to thank San Antonio Spurs

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Kawhi Leonard's first public statement since being part of a blockbuster National Basketball Association trade last month is full of thanks but short on explanations.

Much has been said about Toronto's treat to trade away DeRozan despite his loyalty to the franchise.

He says he and his family (re: Uncle Dennis) want to thank the Spurs organization and "the people and fans of San Antonio".

"I'll always be grateful for my growth under your guidance", Leonard wrote about Popovich.


Leonard didn't directly mention Toronto or the Raptors, but did say that he was "looking forward to the next chapter in my career".

"Through all the ups and downs - I'm glad there were many more ups!"

"While I'm looking forward to the next chapter in my career, I'll always remember the city and the people of San Antonio!".

There was speculation that Leonard would not play for Toronto, as his preference was to head to Los Angeles and play for the Lakers.


Kawhi Leonard thanks the Spurs' fans and organization and said he is looking forward to the "next chapter" in his National Basketball Association career in his first comments since being traded form San Antonio to Toronto this summer. Leonard gives a shoutout to his teammates "over my seven years in the National Basketball Association".

He also thanked the fans (again). - I'll never forget what we shared and accomplished together.

Leonard demanded a trade this summer away from the only team he has known, after seven mostly brilliant seasons in San Antonio.

Kawhi Leonard hasn't spoken publicly in months, as he last met with the media prior to his self-imposed exile from the Spurs to NY to rehab his quad injury. He was the Finals MVP in 2014 when the Spurs beat the Miami Heat in five games for the title.


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