With NBA investigating allegations, West agreed to pay for aid with Leonard deal

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The NBA has opened an investigation into allegations that Los Angeles Clippers executive board member Jerry West agreed to pay a man who claims to be a friend of Kawhi Leonard $ 2.5 million to help him make ensuring that the two-time MVP of the Finals join his hometown club in the 2019 Off-Season, according to multiple reports.

TMZ reported on Monday that Johnny Wilkes – who claims to have close ties to Leonard and his uncle, Dennis Robertson – alleges in a new lawsuit that West did not pay him for his work in creating a game plan to bring the superstar in Los Angeles and help facilitate a deal.

By AthleticSam Amick and Marc Stein from the New York Times, the league is reviewing the claims.

Amick reports that the Clippers are pushing back harshly on the allegations and insisting it is a prank.

In a statement obtained by Stein on Thursday night, the Clippers said the trial was “full of inaccuracies and the allegations were baseless.”

Leonard, for his part, told reporters Thursday night that Wilkes played no part in his decision to join the Clippers.

” Not at all. It has nothing to do with me. I’m from LA and have grown up here all my life, here people are trying to find a way to get money, but it probably won’t be the last, “he said, by the Los Angeles Times«Andrew Greif.

Amick says the NBA has been keeping a close watch on the Clippers since they investigated the team over allegations of undue advantages granted to Leonard to woo him during the 2019 free agency process. And, if the allegation s turns out to be true, could face the prospect of not only heavy fines and / or suspensions, but also losing draft picks.

Leonard signed a three-year, $ 103 million contract, with an opt-out option in 2021, with the Clippers in 2019, which just led the Toronto Raptors to their first ever championship. franchise.

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