Kawhi Leonard is finally returning to action for the Los Angeles Clippers when they play the Detroit Pistons on Thursday night. Head coach Ty Lue, however, refused to say whether there will be minutes restrictions for the superstar after his long spell on the sidelines.
Leonard's return wasn't surprising as he was upgraded to questionable earlier in the day. With that, the only questions left were whether he would start and how long he's going to play as he makes his way back to the team.
Lue pointed out that Leonard will be starting for the Clippers. Nonetheless, the veteran tactician emphasized they aren't going to put specific minutes restriction on Kawhi and instead will be checking on him periodically to determine if they should keep the star forward in the game or take him out.
“We’re not going to talk about minutes. But just checking on him throughout the course of the game and make sure things are going well for him,” Lue said, per Mark Medina of NBA.com.
Kawhi Leonard has missed the Clippers' last 12 games after feeling some stiffness in his surgically repaired right knee. He has suit up for two games prior to his injury hiatus, averaging 12.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists.
Considering that Leonard missed all of the 2021-22 season after tearing his ACL in the 2020-21 playoffs, fans shouldn't have their hopes up of long minutes for the 31-year-old. Still, his return is definitely good news to a Clippers team looking to turn things around after an up-and-down start to the campaign.