Kawhi Leonard Choosing To Remain Inactive?

Kawhi Leonard has received medical clearance to return from a quad injury, but has made a decision to remain inactive, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

Leonard met with a specialist in New York prior to the All-Star Game to get a second opinion on the right quad tendinopathy problem that has sidelined him for all but nine games this season. Sources told Wojnarowski that the decision on when Leonard will return is entirely up to him, and his comfort level with the injury will determine whether he plays again this season (Twitter link).

Earlier, we relayed the news that San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich told reporters tonight that he doesn’t expect Leonard back before the season ends. This report from Woj sheds some light on why he made those comments.

During his 10 days in New York, Leonard held workouts at the gym inside NBPA headquarters with representatives from the Spurs on hand to watch him in action.

Sources have told Wojnarowski that Leonard’s prolonged absence has caused stress within the organization, and the deteriorating relationship between the team and its star player could affect his decision when free agency arrives in 2019.

 

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8 thoughts on “Kawhi Leonard Choosing To Remain Inactive?

  1. chiefivey

    idk its a weird story to me. even if he didnt want to be there anymore, he should still play to keep his value high, no?

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    • He’s not a D Rose, but this situation is turning into a similar situation that Rose went through. Personally, I think this has to do with Leonard just feeling he isn’t ready. Just because he is cleared doesn’t mean he’s actually physically/mentally ready to get back out there. He already tried coming back once earlier this season and either got reinjured or was never healthy to begin with. He’s probably trying to avoid that and wants to make sure he’s as close to 100% as possible. I doubt that this should affect the relationship between him and the Spurs too much. If anything, this would affect the relationship he has with his teammates. But as long as he comes clean with why he’s not ready, I’m sure they’ll understand why he isn’t coming back yet.

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  2. Weird to see this kind of controversy around the Spurs. Leonard doesn’t seem like the type of guy to pull a stunt, and we know the Spurs are a first class organization. Would be strange if this became an issue between KL and the team.

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  3. Yeah, I also find it hard to believe…

    The only thing I can imagine is Leonard maybe having had his fill of the Spurs fuzzy family feeling, and either feeling it is too invasive/personal – he’s a quiet guy – or that it’s too much pressure – “here are the keys to the franchise; continue Timmy’s great work”.

    I also think he’d be frustrated with some of the Spurs contract issues and trade/free agency decisions…

    Pau’s contract is a waste of space. LaMarcus is fairly one-dimensional. DeJounte isn’t close to being the starting point on a championship team.

    Behind Kawhi, you have Aldridge, but after that there is a STEEP drop off in talent.

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