The Clippers have another 0-2 hole to climb out of, but this time they’ll have to do it without Kawhi Leonard. The star forward has officially been ruled out of Thursday’s Game 3 of the Western Conference finals, tweets Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times.
Leonard hasn’t played since hurting his knee nine days ago in Game 5 of L.A.’s series against the Jazz. The Clippers managed to win the final two games of that series without him, but are staring at a deficit again after dropping back-to-back games in Phoenix.
Coach Tyronn Lue said over the weekend that he’s preparing to play the entire conference finals without Leonard, just to avoid the game-to-game uncertainty of whether he’ll be available.
The Clippers are officially calling Leonard’s knee injury a sprain, but few details have been released about the severity. There was concern last week that he might have damaged his ACL, but no one has confirmed whether that happened.