NBA

Kawhi downgraded to questionable for Monday's game due to illness

By Sports Desk January 02, 2023

The Los Angeles Clippers must wait on the status of franchise player Kawhi Leonard after he was a late addition to the injury report for Monday's home game against the Miami Heat.

Leonard, who has only played in 16 of the Clippers' 38 games this season, has been listed as questionable due to a non-COVID illness after suiting up for each of his side's past three outings.

After missing the entire 2021-22 season following an ACL tear in the 2021 playoffs, Leonard has slowly been recapturing the form that has earned him five NBA All-Star selections and seven NBA All-Defensive honours.

He averaged 10 points per game across his five games played in October and November, but looked back to his old self in December, posting 20.6 points, 7.0 rebounds and 4.2 assists in his 11 games played in the month.

Leonard also has fond memories of his time competing against the Heat, announcing his arrival as a star when he won the NBA Finals MVP in 2014, as the San Antonio Spurs defeated the LeBron James led 'Heatles' in their quest for a three-peat.

It is one of two Finals MVP trophies in Leonard's possession after also carrying the Toronto Raptors to an improbable championship in 2019, joining James and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as the only players to win the award with two teams.

The Heat may also be undermanned for Monday's fixture, with Jimmy Butler, Caleb Martin, Gabe Vincent and Duncan Robinson all questionable due to various injuries.

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