/Kawhi – 9 years in (Part1)

Kawhi – 9 years in (Part1)

It’s been 9 years since Kahwi was drafted 15th overall by the Pacers. Once a lanky defender with draft comparisons of Gerald Wallace and Luc Richard Mbah Amoute, he has transcended those and has developed his game into one of the best today. Despite all of the hefty contracts and the endorsements, the Klaw has maintained a low profile and doe not want the glitz and glamor of being an NBA Superstar (he does not even own a luxury sports car). Leonard has also gotten his fair share of positives and negatives in his 9 year pro career. We will be reviewing the strong points now and his mediocre points in a later article
The Klaw– We already know Kawhi’s best asset is his impregnable defense. He is seen to dive passing lanes, touch the ball up from his matchup like its a petty exercise. In his first ring way back 2014, he lead his team in most of the statistical categories. This is sure for some to assume that he is the best player on the team, but no he isn’t because it still belonged to Duncan, Ginobili, and Paker. He was mainly assigned to guard LeBron.  Leonard passed the acid test smoothly, resulting in him winning the Finals MVP and has used the experience to his advantage. He is so dominant on the defensive end as he has won the DPOY twice- an award dominated by Centers and Power Forwards. Now as a Clipper, they form one of the best defensive tandems with PG13 all but of one thing (and I will discuss it in another point). 
Midrange Monger– When you are the superstar in your team, you have to make your own shot. Kawhi is no exception as he has totally mastered this forgotten but deadly art. He made Embiid cry like a baby because of a midrange jumper. We’ve seen his shot techniques compared to those of Kobe and MJ. We may never be able to compare Kawhi, Kobe, and Jordan because they played on different eras (Jordan played on an era where it has been the most physical in recent memory; Kobe played in a defensive era as the 2010 Finals Game 7 only reached 83-79 and Kawhi is playing in a more offense minded league) but he is proving to be a really great scorer. His shot making has been the biggest improvement in his career. He has changed his shot form to adjust to the Pro level easily and has constantly improved on his shooting clip. It also helped he eas a student of Kobe’s Mamba academy- another proof he is determined to improve on his weaknesses. Leonard’s style of play maybe boring for some but what’s important is you get buckets for your team night in and night out.
Mobile Legend– See what I did there? See? Just kidding. Kawhi Leonard’s career  maybe polarizing but he is a Winner. Multiple All-Star nods (and the first Kobe Bryant All Star MVP Award), Two-time DPoY, All-NBA selections and most importantly, two championships. Leonard has proved to be a winner in whatever circumstance he is put in. As a Spur, he won while locking James up and uder the guidance of Poppovich and with the triumvirate of Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili. When the three tyrant retired, Kawhi led the way supported by Aldridge and if it weren’t for Zaza stepping his foot under him, he would’ve won a second ring under the Spurs banner. As a Raptor with one year remaining, he maximized the season and led the Raps as an Alpha. He also produced one of the most dominant post-season runs in recent memory as he transformed the Toronto franchise from a playoff contender to a winner. This also resulted in him as the obvious choice to win Finals MVP the second time. This season, the Clippers rest well as the second seed in a tough as usual Western Conference. He is now given a chance to lead his team again to win again and on his third franchise. If the season resumes, he really has a chance to stamp his legacy. This could also put him ahead of LeBron in winning 3 titles on 3 teams.
Low-key Lifestyle– Leonard has lived his entire life in the California region. Now a Clipper and his contract reaching the $100M mark, it maybe surprising that he only bought a “second hand Subaru Forester. This car is expensive but when you have huge contracts, it must be an easy buy already. But Leonard isn’t like that. He does not want to succumb to the LA glamorous lifestyle. We’ve seem other athletes succumb to  fame and money- Joakim Noah was an All-Star before signing with New York which only caused his downfall. Andy Ruiz , the former Heavyweight champion also another athlete who struggled when he had everything. Even before signing with the Clips, Leonard is seen  driving a 1997 Chevy SUV which he used ever since he was in High School. We never know we might see him one random day because he does not want to be recognized. We are also sure that Kawhi won’t get swayed by any of the nightlife around LA. He is always and will be a low-key person.