On this bonus episode, Hunter is joined by Sean Woodley of Locked on Raptors to discuss Kawhi Leonard’s return to Toronto. Where does Kawhi rank among Toronto Raptors’ legends? Should his jersey be retired? All that, and much more!
In the most anticipated game of the year, Kawhi Leonard is coming back as a member of an opposing team for the first time since the Toronto Raptors championship. He’s going to get his ring. He’ll have a tribute video and a standing ovation that will resemble that of DeMar DeRozan‘s return game.
We all know Kawhi didn’t stay around for very long. However, he really didn’t need to in order to make the impact that he did. Hunter and Sean have some thoughts about that impact on the organization and city.
Before last season, the Raptors were one of those franchises that felt like they were never going to have the chance to win an NBA championship. That all changed with the addition of Kawhi.
In a league like the NBA, getting a superstar shoots you up into the discussion of title contenders. That’s exactly what happened last offseason.
However, the addition of Kawhi really did more than just propel the Toronto Raptors to the top of the league. It changed the way fans thought about the organization, it gave the team real credibility and most of all, it gave Canadians something to unite them.
What Kawhi did for the team, the city and the country was no joke. That’s why he’s going down as one of the best Raptors of all time after playing just one season with the team.
He gave us Raptors fans moments that we’ll remember for the rest of our lives. There was the dunk over Giannis Antetokounmpo, the laugh and of course the shot. Despite him being gone, those moments will forever live with us.
Raptors fans can collectively dream and salivate over the thought of what the next few years could have looked like adding Kawhi to the core of young talent in Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet, and OG Anunoby.
Unfortunately, we’re never going to see that play out. But, the Raptors are perfectly fine the way they are. In fact, you can even argue they’re in a better spot now than they ever were before, and a lot of that has to do with Kawhi’s impact.
So, thank you Kawhi!