In a Thursday night game, the San Antonio Spurs took on the Oklahoma City Thunder when Spurs forward, Kawhi Leonard was struck in the head by Thunder guard, Victor Olidipo, resulting in a loss for San Antonio. The Spurs announced Friday that Leonard will enter the NBA concussion protocol for the next 48 hours. This means he will not play Saturday night in San Antonio against the Golden State Warriors. Since Warriors forward Kevin Durant’s injury, the Spurs have been chasing the Warriors for the best record in the Western Conference. Note: Durant will most likely miss the rest of the regular season.
Kawhi Leonard has entered the NBA’s Concussion Protocol. He will not play in tomorrow’s Spurs-Warriors game. pic.twitter.com/hVrGV1IAhN
— San Antonio Spurs (@spurs) March 10, 2017
Leonard had been electric in the Spurs’ last 3 games, being named Western Conference Player of the Week. Leonard put up MVP type numbers, averaging 32.0 points, 9.0 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 4.0 steals, and nearly 40 minutes a game. He also led the Spurs to a 3-0 record that week.
The Spurs are currently only 2 games back from the Warriors. With the Warriors adapting to a lineup without Durant, the Spurs will likely catch them in the standings. With a healthy Leonard, they could surpass them. The Spurs should never be counted out and they can beat the Warriors if Kevin Durant’s injury effects his play or him playing in general. Their mindset is that they are playing for an NBA Finals appearance.
Kawhi Leonard is a strong MVP candidate this season. He was second in MVP voting polls last year, and is currently experiencing the best year of his career. He’s been averaging 26.2 points, 5.9 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 1.9 steals, and considered by many to be the best defender in the NBA.
Who should win the Most Valuable Player Award is up for debate now. Early in the season, it was between Russell Westbrook and James Harden. Now Kawhi Leonard is legitimately in the running. When asked about his recent play, Kawhi simply responded:
The following is from BleacherReport.com
“I’m just playing basketball………”
— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) March 7, 2017