Kawhi Leonard speaks publicly for first time since injury, says he's close to return

Spurs All-Star forward says he feels good, 'pretty healthy'

SAN ANTONIO – Kawhi Leonard updated his injury status before the Spurs' game against Detroit on Monday night at the AT&T Center.

Leonard has not played this regular season. His injury has been listed by the Spurs as right quadriceps tendinopathy.

The Spurs All-Star forward said he feels good and expects to be back in the lineup soon.

"I feel good, been a long wait but I’m feeling pretty healthy,” Leonard said. “Playing 5-on-5, just still have go through a few more processes, and I should be back soon.”

The 5-on-5 practices are significant because it is the same recovery process Tony Parker underwent before he made his season debut.

Leonard added he does not have a target game for his return, but during his pregame media availability, Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said Leonard’s return is “really much sooner now."

When asked about the length of his recovery, Leonard said he did not think about it and was just focused on getting better.

“Me not being able to play the game was a little frustrating, but my team is doing a great job of holding their own,” Leonard said. "A lot of people stepped up and it's going to be great for us in the long run.”

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According to Leonard, the injury did not happen last season, but was as he described, “just wear and tear.”

Monday evening was the first time Leonard had spoken publicly since his injury designation. He spoke during Spurs media day in September, but there was no news of a possible injury.

The Spurs started a three-game home stand on Monday. They will play Miami on Wednesday and Boston on Friday.


About the Author:

RJ Marquez has been at KSAT since 2010. He's covered a variety of stories and events across the San Antonio area, and is the lead reporter for KSAT Explains. He also covers the Spurs for on-air and digital platforms. You can see RJ regularly on KSAT Explains and Good Morning San Antonio. He also writes a weekly Spurs newsletter.