clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Kawhi Leonard will come off the bench for Clippers Thursday vs. Lakers

The move is an effort to manage Leonard’s workload over the course of the season.

Minnesota Timberwolves v Los Angeles Clippers
Kawhi Leonard of the LA Clippers dribbles the ball against the Minnesota Timberwolves during a preseason game on October 9, 2022 at Arena in Los Angeles, California.
Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images

Update: Leonard will come off the bench Thursday against the Lakers and the reasoning is quite odd if you ask me. Head coach Tyronn Lue also said Leonard would come off the bench so the team could use him at the end of the games, which doesn’t really make sense for a number of reasons. Leonard can start, play for a bit and then rest. The Clippers have a deep rotation, so finding replacement minutes isn’t a problem. LA is being cautious but eventually Leonard is going to have to play big minutes for this team to win a title.

The Los Angeles Clippers are considering the possibility of bringing Kawhi Leonard off the bench to start the season, according to Chris Haynes. Leonard missed all of last season with a torn ACL and has experienced leg issues in the last few years, so this is all a strategy to keep him healthy when the games really start to count.

Leonard is no stranger to load management, and in fact could be considered the pioneer for the term. He would sit out the second of back-to-back games religiously after recovering from his first leg injury, which was a quad issue. Even after missing all of last season to heal, the Clippers are going to be careful with their star. This is a big season for LA, especially given the roster they have. If Leonard isn’t healthy, they likely get knocked down a bit among the title contenders.

From a fantasy and DFS standpoint, Leonard likely loses some value as a top tier player. Look for Paul George to be the more reliable option to start the season in fantasy and DFS formats.