Kawhi Leonard’s Stellar Season Overshadowed by Knee Woes: Playoff Outlook Uncertain for Clippers Star

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“Kawhi Leonard’s Playoff Status Uncertain Amid Persistent Knee Soreness,” Clippers Coach Lue Expresses Hope

Los Angeles Clippers star Kawhi Leonard has been sidelined since March 31 due to ongoing knee issues, casting doubt on his availability for the playoffs. Coach Tyronn Lue addressed Leonard’s status following the team’s recent loss to the Utah Jazz, showing optimism that Leonard will be ready for Game 1 of the first round.

“We’re hopeful to see Kawhi ready,” Lue told reporters. Leonard’s absence, stemming from knee soreness, has disrupted the Clippers’ lineup, leaving his return timeline uncertain.

NBA DFS: Kawhi Leonard playing for the clippers
Kawhi amidst the approaching playoffs (Credits: NBA.com)

Before March 31, Leonard had missed only six games due to injury this season. Initially, there was little concern about his absence, with hopes high for a swift return.

However, his prolonged absence has raised anxiety levels among Clippers fans and management alike. Clippers president Lawrence Frank shed light on Leonard’s condition, citing inflammation in the knee as the primary issue.

“It’s no secret he’s had a couple of surgeries to that knee,” Frank explained. “Dealing with inflammation is not uncommon, but it limits natural basketball movements. Kawhi and our staff are working diligently to address the inflammation.”

However, with the playoffs looming, Leonard’s health remains a pressing concern for the Clippers, who are eager to have their star player back on the court for the postseason push.

Despite a promising season, Kawhi Leonard’s ongoing battle with knee troubles has cast a shadow over his accomplishments. The 68 games he played mark his most appearances since 2017, a testament to his resilience.

However, Clippers president Lawrence Frank highlighted Leonard’s history of serious knee injuries, including a torn ACL in the 2021 playoffs and a torn meniscus in the 2023 playoffs, both afflicting his right knee—the same knee now causing concern.

Kawhi Leonard

Before his recent setback, Leonard was enjoying a stellar season, showcasing his all-around prowess on the court. Averaging 23.7 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 1.6 steals per game, Leonard was on track to join the elite 50/40/90 club, narrowly missing the mark due to a few missed free throws.

Despite Leonard’s success, the Clippers are locked into the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference, facing the Dallas Mavericks in the first round. It’s a matchup of historical significance, with this being the third time in five seasons that the teams have met in the playoffs.

While the Clippers emerged victorious in the previous encounters, the road ahead promises to be challenging, particularly if Leonard is sidelined or not at full strength.


By Michael Smith

Hi. Hailing from Manila, I am an avid consumer of anime, gaming, football and professional wrestling. You can mostly find me either writing articles, binging shows or engaged in an engrossing discussion about the said interests.

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