Kawhi Leonard Biography: A Look into The Life of Toronto’s Superstar

Kawhi Leonard Biography: A Look into The Life of Toronto’s Superstar

If you’ve been following the NBA playoffs, and now the NBA Finals, you definitely should know who the most important player for the Raptors is, and so here’s our very own Kawhi Leonard Biography.

Early Days

Kawhi Leonard began his professional career playing for the Aztecs, the basketball team for San Diego State University.

And after a successful time there (skipping his last two college years), he was recruited by the Pacers as the 15th overall pick at the 2011 NBA Draft.

The same night of the draft, he was traded to San Antonio, remaining with the Spurs for a long time, since 2011 until 2018, when he moved to Toronto to play for the Raptors.

Kawhi Leonard Biography: Career Highlights

His career highlights and awards are many, and here are the most important ones:

  • 2012 NBA All-Rookie first team: Apart from getting these honors, he also finished fourth overall in the voting for NBA Rookie of the Year.
  • 2014 NBA champion: This year, he got his first NBA title, and now he’s looking to get a second one with the Raptors.
  • 2014 NBA Finals MVP: He came up with a career-high 29 points, and was also the 3rd youngest professional basketball player to get this distinction.
  • 2015, 2016 NBA defensive player of the year: In 2015, after missing a few games due to an eye infection, he returned to the court fully empowered, scoring a career-high 32 points, and was named the best defensive player in the league. The following year, he received the same honors.
  • 2016, 2017, 2019 NBA All-Star: The first year of his selection, he became just the 6th player in the history of the Spurs to get selected as an All-Star starter. In 2017, he got selected as an All-star starter once again. This year he scored a career-high 38 points in a loss to the Suns, and then broke his own record with another outstanding performance to the Cavs, scoring 41 points. And to top it all up, he finished second in the voting for MVP, losing to Stephen Curry.

Kawhi Leonard and The Raptors

After a period of injuries that left him out of action, some disagreements surfaced between him and the Spurs concerning his rehabilitation process, and this pretty much led Kawhi to request a trade.

He ended up being traded to Toronto, along with teammate Danny Green in exchange for Jakob Pöltl, DeMar DeRozan, and a 2019 first-round pick.

During his debut, a 116-104 victory versus the Cavs, Leonard finished with 24 points and 12 rebounds.

And after breaking his own career-high records, he came up with a new one: 45 points during an Eastern Conference semifinals 108-95 victory over the Sixers.

Then, during game seven, he was able to hit a shot at the buzzer, getting a historical victory that gave the Raptors a ticket to the conference finals, where they were able to take down the Bucks in six games (fourth straight wins for the Raptors).

He was crucial during game 3 versus Milwaukee, scoring 36 points, including 8 during the second overtime period.

Then, during game five, he came up with another 35 points, including 5 three-pointers, allowing his team to take a 3-2 lead in the series. He also scored 27 points during game six, helping the Raptors to acquire its first NBA Finals ticket for Toronto, and Canada!

Kawhi Leonard Biography: The Finals and Future

Now everything’s set for the NBA Finals, where Kawhi and his teammates are going to try to make history.

The team was able to beat the Warriors 118-109 on game 1, being the second straight win for Toronto at Scotiabank Arena, after getting the Eastern Conference Finals title in a 100-94 victory over the Bucks.

There’s still one more game to be played in Toronto, and if the Raptors get this win, their dreams of making history for Canada will be even closer.

Now, when it comes to the future of Leonard, the player has been treated amazingly well in Canada, so even though he’ll become a free agent this summer, many believe the future of the player is still in Toronto.

Game Two: Where, When:

The second game of the NBA Finals is set to take place on June 2, at Scotiabank Arena, and after reading our Kawhi Leonard Biography, if you want to put some action on this match, we invite you to check out our NBA Finals lines. Best of luck!