Kawhi Leonard will not play in Game 5 of the Los Angeles Clippers’ series against the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night because of a knee injury. Unfortunately, it sounds like that knee injury could be very serious.
The Clippers fear Leonard has an ACL injury, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports. The two-time NBA Finals MVP is out indefinitely.
That would obviously be the worst-case scenario for Leonard and the Clippers. The team’s chances of advancing to the next round — let alone reaching the Finals — will take a major hit without Leonard. Not only that, but Leonard could miss a significant portion of the 2021-22 season if he winds up needing ACL surgery.
Leonard landed awkwardly on a drive in the fourth quarter of Game 4 on Monday night and appeared to be in pain. He briefly remained in the game before exiting.
The injury likely happened on that play, as Leonard threw down an explosive dunk earlier in the game and seemed to be fine.
Leonard is one of the best postseason players in NBA history. The Clippers were hoping for a much better result this season after their early exit from the bubble last year. Their series against the Jazz is tied at 2-2, but they have little chance of contending without Leonard.