The Case for Kawhi Leonard’s All-Star Credentials

January 27th, 2015 by Stephen Babb Leave a reply »

Through his first three seasons with the San Antonio Spurs, reigning Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard hasn't left the playoffs as anything less than a conference finalist.

All-Star accolades have been harder to come by, however—so far, anyway. When the Western Conference roster's reserves are announced this Thursday, his fortunes may very well change.

In theory.

Unfortunately, his 15.5 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.4 assists per contest may not wow coaches enough to sway their all-important votes. And while his two steals and 0.7 blocks per game could change some minds, so too could the fact that injuries have limited him to just 28 appearances so far. Odds aren't in the 23-year-old's favor. 

Such is life under the selfless brand of basketball head coach Gregg Popovich has installed during the latter stages of Tim Duncan's iconic career. While Leonard is more productive than ever, he's still averaging only 32 minutes per contest—7.5 fewer than fellow fourth-year swingman Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls, a virtual lock to make the Eastern Conference's All-Star roster.

The competitio ...

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