Every day it seems we get a new headline regarding the future of Kawhi Leonard and his tenure with the San Antonio Spurs that goes against everything we've heard previously.
First, it was Kawhi was too injured to return mid-season. Then it turned out he was actually cleared by Spurs doctors to return, which he did for a handful of games before voluntarily sitting out the rest of the season. Then it was revealed Leonard was still cleared by the Spurs medical team, but his own team of doctors said he wasn't healthy enough to play. Then the rumors started to swirl around his future with the team after he wasn't spotted supporting the team during the postseason, and the reports of a waning relationship between him and San Antonio.
Only recently did we hear the news of Kawhi's sister coming out to assure everyone Leonard was 100% focused on returning to play for the Spurs next season, and he was fully committed to the franchise, which was a pretty hard source to go against.
But now we're receiving news that Kawhi has sent the Spurs a list of demands he wants to see implemented if he was to remain with the team.
According to Frank Isola of the New York Daily News, an NBA executive has come out and said Leonard has asked the Spurs if head coach Gregg Popovich can make practices a little less intense and tweak some things in terms of offensive and defensive strategies.
"Don't you have to sign him," asks one rival executive. "From what I understand, he wants (Gregg) Popovich to lighten up a little with practice and tweak some things. The Spurs may not want to change their ways, but this is Kawhi Leonard we're talking about."
This report from Isola is extremely strange, as Leonard has a reputation for being a major gym rat, getting into the gym whenever he has the chance.
"All I want to do is get better," he said. "I love to play this game. It's all that I ever really wanted to do and now that I'm doing it in the NBA, I want to be as good as possible."
The request may come from a place of Kawhi worrying about aggravating his right quad injury in practice once he comes back, and asking to tweak the offense so he has a bit of a lighter load as to not risk another injury that would keep him out another year.
Still, asking coach Pop to change a coaching method that has worked for the past 20 years is a big ask, and probably won't yield the answer Kawhi's looking for.