'It's ridiculous': ESPN analyst rips Kawhi Leonard for missing high-profile games

(AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)
(AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)

If there is one thing we learned during Kawhi Leonard's last season in San Antonio, it's that the all-star forward plays by his own rules. 

The Los Angeles Clippers announced that Leonard would not play in Wednesday night's nationally televised game against the Milwaukee Bucks due to load management on his knee. 

It's believed Leonard will play in Thursday's game against Portland.

This is the second consecutive week the Clippers have ruled Leonard out for a high-profile game on ESPN.

Last week, Leonard sat out a game against the Utah Jazz, but played in the Clippers win over the Spurs on Halloween.

NBA analyst Doris Burke unloaded on Leonard sitting out on ESPN's "Get Up" Wednesday morning. 

"Kawhi not playing to me is ridiculous at this point. I don't understand it," Burke said. "The league, also I believe, is and should be concerned that their best players are not playing on nights when they are on national television."

Burke also said she believes the NBA has a long-term problem with players missing games.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the league looked into Leonard missing games, and believes the Clippers are compliant with their injury report.

"Kawhi Leonard is not a healthy player under the league's resting policy, and, as such, is listed as managing a knee injury in the LA Clippers injury report," NBA spokesperson Mike Bass told ESPN.com. "The league office, in consultation with the NBA's director of sports medicine, is comfortable with team medical staff's determination that Leonard is not sufficiently healthy to play in back-to-back games at this time."

Leonard has not played in back-to-back games since the 2017 season with the Spurs.

During his final season in San Antonio, Leonard played only nine games.

Wojnarowski reported the Clippers have no intention of playing Leonard in back-to-back games during the regular season.

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.