Things have gotten more interesting in San Antonio.
Despite being medically cleared to play, two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, Kawhi Leonard may not play a single game this season.
According to reports, the Spurs star is said to have made the personal decision to not play in any of the remaining 23 games this season.
On Tuesday, head coach Gregg Popovich reiterated such a claim.
“We only have X number of games left in the season and he’s still not ready to go,” Popovich said. “And if by some chance there is, it’s going to be pretty late into the season.”
Leonard, who’s been nursing a right quad tendinopathy injury dating back to the preseason, has only played in nine games this season and never playing in more than two in a row.
The Spurs currently sit at third place in the Western Conference with a 35-24 record. Although the Spurs could obviously use the skills of Leonard in the lineup, it may be a wise decision to shut him down for the rest of the season to preserve him long term. The team and Leonard have both said that this injury has been like any other, as far as healing, so it may be beneficial to rest him for the remaining months.
One other thing that is at risk this season for the Spurs is their consecutive seasons with at least 50 wins. The team has had at least 50 wins in a season every year since the 1996-1997 season.