Kawhi Leonard shocked the NBA when he signed with the Clippers after they constructed an unprecedented package to acquire Paul George from the Thunder. Previous reports suggested that the Raptors and Lakers were Leonard's biggest targets, but now it seems like the fight for the Finals MVP wasn't as closely contested as critics thought.
The Undefeated's Marc J. Spears reported that the Lakers were never Leonard's preferred landing spot
"There was 'no way' Leonard was going to sign as a free agent with [LeBron] James, [Anthony] Davis and the Lakers despite speculation they were the front-runners," Spears wrote.
Prior to his decision, many insiders (except Cris Carter) reported that the Clippers were out of contention and Leonard was teetering between resigning with the Raptors or moving forward with the Lakers.
This apparently couldn't be further from the truth. Leonard was not sold on the Lakers' shaky foundation and was "concerned" about the balance of power within the NBA. Per the Toronto Star, LeBron James pitched the idea of being the third option in the Lakers' potential big three. This didn't sit well with Leonard, who's become known as the league's "Dynasty Killer." The Lakers were also the only team to leak information about their pitch to Leonard. Those two issues reportedly ruled the Lakers out of contention.