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.”
More Kawhi Leonard as he updated his injury status, did not give target game for his return, but said he is practicing 5-on-5 and he feels good #Spurs #KSATnews #ksatsports #NBA pic.twitter.com/KL1gAG2kTg— RJ Marquez (@KSATRJ) December 5, 2017
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.”
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.