The Los Angeles Lakers were considered one of three finalists to land Toronto Raptors free-agent forward Kawhi Leonard this offseason before the two-time NBA Finals MVP eventually joined the Los Angeles Clippers.
That apparently didn't come as much of a surprise to Lakers guard Danny Green, who "didn't see" his teammate of eight years wearing purple and gold.
"I think all of it was a shock to me," Green told ESPN's Dave McMenaminand other reporters on a conference call. "Except not as much of a shock Kawhi going to L.A. The Clippers, anyway. I didn't see him coming this route [to the Lakers].
"I feel like he wanted to go his own route. I think it was between them and going back. I think the year that he had and what those fans brought this season and everything it was hard for him to turn it down and leave Toronto. But I knew he wanted to be closer to home."
Green and Leonard played together on the San Antonio Spurs from 2011-18 and on the title-winning Raptors last season. They'll now be in the same city again, albeit in different uniforms.
Leonard is originally from Riverside, California and played collegiately at San Diego State. He signed a three-year, $103 million contract with the Clippers to return to Southern California. Green agreed to join the Lakers on a two-year, $30 million deal.
The Lakers would have been an odd fit for Leonard, who just finished leading the Raptors to an NBA championship.