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3 Things You Need To Know: Kawhi Could Be On The Move As Draft Days Approach For NBA, NHL

Alex Donno
June 21, 2018 - 1:24 pm

The weeks between the NBA Finals and the July 1st open to free agency is one of my favorite times of year to cover basketball. The rumor mill churns out of control as teams brace themselves for free agency, trades and the draft. I call it speculation season, and it weighs heavily on this week's "3 Things You Need To Know."

1 - Kawhi Leonard wants out of San Antonio. The Spurs forward, who happens to be one of the top two-way players in the NBA, has requested a trade from the Spurs. He's very much within his physical prime at 26 years old, so he should command dozens of suitors. The only sticking point is this: he only has one year left on his contract and could scare some teams away if he makes it clear that he plans to sign with the Lakers next summer as a free agent. Reports have surfaced that Kawhi wants to form a "super team" in Los Angeles with LeBron James, whether this summer or next. So, if the Heat could convince San Antonio to send Leonard to Miami for Goran Dragic, Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow and Bam Adebayo, would Pat Riley be making a good decision if it's only for a one-year rental?

Meanwhile, the NBA Draft takes place TONIGHT (Thursday, June 21st). The Heat do not have a pick in either round, but keep your eyes peeled in case Riley tries to deal his way into round 2. 

2 - In Friday's NHL Draft, the Florida Panthers own the fifteenth overall pick. The Cats don't have a glaring need, so expect GM Dale Tallon to target the best player available. Tallon has already had a busy week. On Tuesday, the Panthers acquired forward Mike Hoffman from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for three future draft picks. The Cats also received a 7th round pick in the deal. The former Ottawa Senator has scored at least 20 goals in each of his past four seasons. Expect him to play on Florida's second line, centered by Vincent Trocheck. Hoffman should provide a serious scoring boost to the Cats!

3 - The Miami Dolphins have signed their entire draft class for 2018. No holdouts and no drama. Dolphins fans can breathe a sigh of relief when it comes to the rookies. The last to put pen to paper was second round tight end Mike Gesicki, who put his John Hancock on a 4-year deal worth $6.6 million. 

The next stop for the Dolphins is training camp. The dates have not been finalized yet, but camp usually begins around the final weekend of July.