Kawhi Leonard appears to have avoided serious injury after a scary collision Friday night.
The Los Angeles Clippers were cruising along Friday night against the Denver Nuggets. Then something very scary happened in the fourth quarter.
Kawhi Leonard took an accidental elbow to the jaw from teammate Serge Ibaka and slumped to the floor like he was just knocked out in the UFC octagon. Blood covered his mouth and arm and it was easy to assume the worst.
Luckily, it appears he just needed stitches and avoided anything serious or season-ending.
Kawhi needed eight stitches to treat a mouth laceration, per the Clippers.
Ty Lue said he believes Kawhi will be “fine.” https://t.co/luhGun2Cpk
— ESPN (@espn) December 26, 2020
Kawhi Leonard received eight stitches after lacerating his mouth
The initial fear from such a collision is a broken jaw or even a nasty concussion. The Clippers play again Sunday afternoon so it wouldn’t be a surprise if Leonard sits out just to be safe and let his mouth heal.
As of Saturday afternoon, there was no further update from the team other than the fact Leonard got stitches. He will still need to be monitored to make sure there aren’t any lasting effects or concussion-like symptoms.
Paul George said after the game he was worried about Kawhi based on the optics of the injury, and his only concern was making sure Kawhi was alright.
Even with the star’s absence, late the Clippers were able to hang on and improve to 2-0 this season. Leonard had 21 points in 30 minutes and Paul George led the way with 23 points in a well-balanced Clippers attack.
Seeing George play well in two games is good news after he signed his own mega-extension this offseason. The man who earned the sad nickname of “Pandemic P” must prove he can carry this team even if Leonard misses time with an injury or just to rest.
NBA fans saw a brutal scene and Leonard appears to have escaped without anything too serious. Hopefully, there are no further negative updates to come out from the team this weekend.