Leonard’s immediate future was resolved on Wednesday after the Raptors reached an agreement over a deal centred around DeMar DeRozan heading in the opposite direction.
However, many perceive it as a one-year rental with the 27-year-old able to leave for free next summer.
The Lakers could supposedly wait until 2019 to make a move for him in free agency, but there will likely be other suitors in for his services.
And former NFL star Cris Carter believes the LA Clippers could pip the Lakers in free agency, therefore suggesting Magic Johnson and co. should make a move before the trade deadline.
“The Lakers should definitely keep trying to pursue him,” Carter said on First Things First.
“They have a better chance if they are able to land him before free agency because the Clippers do provide something that the Lakers… they don’t want to see it.
“For me, I would have Kawhi off the market before the Clippers can get involved.
“Jerry West needs one more big win before he sail off as a great. The best player-executive that sports has ever seen.
“Doc Rivers as the coach – that’s enticing to Kawhi. Not being involved in the paparazzi, day-to-day life of LeBron James – that is very interesting to Kawhi.
“The Lakers, they increase their chances if they’re able to land him before he can becomes a free agent where he can play in the same building, but play with the Clippers uniform on.”