Kawhi Leonard blames media for Spurs fans booing him

Basketball: What kind of reception can Kawhi Leonard expect in his first return to San Antonio?

The Spurs traded their star lockdown defender Kawhi Leonard and their wing Danny Green to the Raptors for their star guard DeMar DeRozan and big man Jakob Poetl.

The nine-year Raptors legend who cemented himself as a fan favourite during his tenure in Toronto waited for his first ever game against his former squad to post his first career triple-double, overshadowing the returns of two players who helped lead the Spurs to their most recent National Basketball Association title. "Everybody's anticipating the game".

"You move on in life", Popovich said.

"I think it'll be loud, like a playoff game, I assume", Green added.

The four-time All-Star recorded the first triple-double of his 10-year career against his former team as he finished the night with 21 points (on 7-for-15 shooting), 14 rebounds and 11 assists in 33 minutes of action.

"I hope they react just as well and the same that they do with any other ex-teammate that comes back", Mills told reporters. So it doesn't matter what we say.

Maddie Meyer  Getty Images
Maddie Meyer Getty Images

"I don't speak for other people, but I hope that we'll treat everybody with kindness and respect", Popovich said.

Leonard's mother Kim Robertson (right) took issue with one fan on Thursday, but the entire AT&T Center in San Antonio seemed determined to make the Leonard family uncomfortable.

It marked the first time that Kawhi Leonard played in San Antonio since being traded to the Toronto Raptors over the course of the offseason. We got some things as a team to look at and get better at. "Then, I've got nine", DeRozan said. "We'll see tonight, I don't know". "I'm sure they're going to be on Kawhi a little bit, they're going to show a lot of emotions, hopefully a lot of love to both of us".

When the trade was first announced, DeRozan posted on social media that he felt "betrayed" by the Toronto organization.

Over the summer, DeRozan said that his first meeting with the Raptors would be a game he had circled on his calendar.

"It really wasn't [anything]", he said. He did, however, say he'll likely feel different on February 22 when he finally returns to Toronto, where DeRozan played the first nine years of his career before the July trade.

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