Kawhi Leonard is mostly reticent. His seeming disappearance from the public sphere since his injury has not done much to ward off speculations regarding his status with the San Antonio Spurs organization.
The Spurs announced Leonard’s injury on September 30, 2017, stating that their versatile forward would miss preseason in order to rehab from a “thigh tendinopathy”. After playing a total nine games between December 12, 2017 and January 2, 2018, Leonard was ruled out indefinitely in order to facilitate rehabilitation on his right quad. While reports are rife about the 27-year-old wanting to go to his native Los Angeles to play for the Lakers, much attention has not been given particularly to the state of the injury that saw him feature sparingly last season.
“The two-time All-Star appeared in just nine games in 2017-18, though, and his disappearing act this summer has only created concern his quad injury is more serious than anybody realizes.”
The idea that Leonard is mostly reclusive in his lifestyle demeanor, in an age where athletes leverage on social media technology to promote their personal brands and connect with fans, fuels the speculation that he could be keeping a lid on a more serious injury than people imagine.
Ric Bucher reported a conversation with a GM on the Eastern Conference who pointed out that Leonard was hampering his trade value by sticking to oblivion even though most teams would pick him up at the slightest opportunity.
“It seems like every other player is putting out a video on social media of them working out. If Kawhi did one, he’d instantly get 35,000 hits, and half of them would be from GMs. How can you make a deal or even an offer without knowing if he can play? He’s got to be seen. If he came out and played in preseason and looked good, you’d definitely see teams trying to get him.”
The latest development, from sources in Leonard’s camp, is that the 6’8 forward is considering joining Team USA senior men’s minicamp which is slated for July 25-27 in Las Vegas. If he participates in the minicamp, it would address speculations regarding his seeming frosty relationship with the Spurs management as the USA Team Head Coach is Spurs’ Popovich. It would also clear speculations regarding the state of his injury and if it is as dreadful as is being imagined.