Spurs' Leonard expects to play in Game 6 despite ankle injury
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[May 11, 2017]
(The Sports Xchange) - San
Antonio Spurs star forward Kawhi Leonard expects to play in Game 6
against the Houston Rockets on Thursday night despite a left ankle
Leonard rolled his ankle with 5:37 left in the third quarter of
Tuesday's Game 5 and played half of the fourth period but did not
take the court for overtime in the Spurs' 110-107 home win to take a
3-2 lead in the best-of-seven Western Conference semi-final series.
"Yeah, I'm going to be able to play," Leonard said after the game.
"It was frustrating because I wanted to play. But I was happy seeing
my team mates out there putting in a good effort and getting the
Leonard suffered the injury when he came down on the foot of
Houston's James Harden while turning to run up the court. He limped
back to the bench during the next stoppage in play and re-entered
the game but did not score after a layup with 1:59 to play in the
The 25-year-old Leonard still led the Spurs with 22 points and 15
rebounds. He is averaging 27.8 points, 7.7 rebounds and 4.7 assists
during the postseason.
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Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said Leonard asked to stay
in the game but the staff made the decision to sit him.
"He's had issues, and you could tell just before he took a couple of
shots he jumped off one foot," Popovich said Tuesday. "He didn't
want to come out, obviously. We let him play a little while just to
see what he was going to be like, but it was obvious that he
San Antonio could clinch the series with a victory in Houston on
Thursday. The winner of the semi-final will take on the Golden State
Warriors in the best-of-seven West finals
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