Kawhi Leonard could be available as early as Thursday against Pelicans

Kawhi Leonard could be available as early as Thursday against Pelicans

Kawhi Leonard could be available as early as Thursday against Pelicans

San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard reportedly could return from a quad injury as early as Thursday against the New Orleans Pelicans, according to ESPN's Lisa Salters.

Leonard, 26, missed the team's first 27 games of the season due to right quadriceps tendinopathy before playing December 13.

Leonard has missed the majority of the season with multiple injuries, but could be back as soon as Thursday.

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Leonard has been riding a stationary bike and participating in three-on-three drills to simulate the physical contact of games, but has done so with staff members and "not my players".

Kawhi Leonard #2 of the San Antonio Spurs stands for a moment of silence for the National Anthem before the game against the Houston Rockets during Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals of the 2017 Playoffs on May 7, 2017 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.

The 2014 Finals MVP was named First-Team All-NBA in both the 2016 and 2017 seasons.

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If Leonard were able to return during the week, that would give him a month to readjust to the Spurs before the playoffs. The progress I've been making has been great.

His potential return is very timely as well, as the Spurs have lost eight of their last 10 outings, and saw their record drop to 37-29 for the season. If they miss the playoffs, it would press pause on a marvelous run through the late 1990's and into the 2000's, but there are things at play, too. They're playing well. I've just got to get back. I'm thankful for them, for the teammates that I have.

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