Kawhi Leonard Posts First Message Since Raptors/Spurs Trade

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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.

There have been multiple reports as to how Leonard received the trade to the Raptors, ranging from having no desire to play in Toronto to being excited about the move and potentially being open to to sticking around long-term.

Leonard - who now plays for the Toronto Raptors - thanked his the Spurs organization and the San Antonio community for the successful years they had together.

Leonard singled out Spurs coach Gregg Popovich in the letter, saying "I'll always be grateful for my growth under your guidance".

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"San Antonio, I have been going back and forth the last few weeks trying to figure out the right things to say, and it comes down to two simple words: THANK YOU!"

"Through ups and downs - glad there were many more ups!" That year, 22-year-old Leonard became the youngest NBA Finals Most Valuable Player (MVP).

"While I'm looking forward to the next chapter in my career", Leonard wrote.

Though some are more heartfelt and less robotic, thank-you letters by traded players rarely say much significantly.

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While Leonard rarely speaks publicly on his intentions, the belief among most pundits is that he wants to join the Los Angeles Lakers.

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

He was traded to the Raptors in July, along with Danny Green, in exchange for DeMar DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl and a protected 2019 first-round pick.

The new-look Raptors will host the Boston Celtics in its season opener on October 19.

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