The Toronto Raptors are nonetheless basking within the glow of their first NBA championship, a feat that got here lower than two months in the past and was pushed largely by Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard. Raptors guard Kyle Lowry stated he discovered personally this summer season that Leonard, who was a free agent, was signing with the LA Clippers somewhat than staying put.
Lowry advised reporters at Monday’s first coaching follow with USA Basketball that he holds no sick will towards his former teammate for transferring on from Toronto.
His response upon listening to Leonard’s resolution was as follows, per Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN: “I am completely happy for you,” Lowry stated. “I’m completely happy for the fellows that … particularly a man that helped do one thing unbelievable and one thing nice. He is an unbelievable buddy of mine and is an effective man.
“He decided to go dwelling and he’s pleased with that and I’m completely happy for him. Really. I’m genuinely completely happy for him. It offers him an opportunity to be round his household and buddies. You bought to respect the man and be completely happy for him.”
As well as, Lowry stated Leonard’s departure did not change the way in which he felt about Toronto reigning supreme within the NBA.
“No, under no circumstances,” Lowry stated, per ESPN.com. “Under no circumstances. We’re champions. It doesn’t matter what. [It will] by no means be taken away from us. Ever. Ever, ever. Ever, ever.”
Along with discussing Leonard’s departure, Lowry additionally spoke about his personal future with Toronto as he can turn out to be a free agent subsequent summer season. Lowry stated he desires to stay with the Raptors long run (he has spent seven of his 13 NBA seasons in Toronto) and just lately employed Mark Bartelstein as his agent, ESPN stories.
“I need to be there — I might like to do a protracted [term] extension, however we’ll see what occurs,” Lowry stated Monday when requested about staying with the Raptors past this season.
“I am right here for USA Basketball and help the fellows and be across the group. [But] I might like to be there long run, however we’ll have that dialogue when the time is true.”
Lowry didn’t take part within the USA’s first follow as he heals up following a process to restore a torn tendon in his left thumb. He is hoping to be cleared to follow when the group reconvenes in Los Angeles from Aug. 13-16 for 3 extra days of follow and an exhibition recreation in opposition to Spain. However proper now, it isn’t assured that he’ll be capable to play.
In Raptors lore, Lowry ranks because the group’s all-time chief in common season 3-pointers made, 3-pointers tried and steals whereas additionally rating within the Prime 5 in a number of different classes together with video games performed, factors scored, assists, free throws and extra. In phrases of playoff historical past, Lowry leads the Raptors in video games performed, factors, assists, steals, subject targets and 3-pointers.
Final season, Lowry made his fifth straight All-Star look and averaged 142 factors, 4.Eight rebounds, 8.7 assists and 1.Four steals per recreation. He made the All-NBA third group within the 2015-16 season.