Spurs ready to unleash Kawhi Leonard
Third year San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard has been overshadowed by the Big Three of San Antonio for the past few seasons. But now the Spurs are ready to unleash the Leonard – who is also their best perimeter defender. Coach Gregg Popovich said not only is Leonard going to play more minutes with the playoffs looming, he’ll be playing more than mainstays Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili.
Via Spurs Nation:
“We want to up his minutes,” Popovich said. “He’s going to play more minutes (in the playoffs) than Tim Duncan does probably, more minutes than Manu Ginobili probably. This is his stretch run and he needs to be in shape for it. He’s never really been able to do this because it was a lockout season or we had to limit his minutes last year. This is the first time he’s been able to lay it out there.”
Despite the Spurs owning the NBA’s best record, they’re going to need to rely on Leonard big time if they want to advance out of the Western Conference. The teams in the West are loaded with dynamic swing players that can cause problems for the top-seeded Spurs. If the Spurs were to come out of the West, they’d probably be facing either the Miami Heat or Indiana Pacers, who both possess talented forwards in LeBron James and Paul George. However, for Spurs fans, seeing Kawhi being unleashed is the moment they’ve been waiting for.