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Report: Kawhi Leonard Returns to Practice, Close to Return

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Sooner rather than later appears to be coming soon.

All-Star small forward Kawhi Leonard accompanied the Spurs on their two-game road swing that opens tonight in Memphis. He is on the road to complete what coach Gregg Popovich calls “the last steps” in a months-long rehabilitation from a quadriceps injury.

Leonard has played two sessions of 5-on-5, going both halfcourt and full. At shootaround this morning at the FedEx Forum, Leonard practiced with the full team for the first time, Popovich said.

“Those are the last steps,” Popovich said. “That’s what Tony (Parker) did before he came back.”

Parker has played in two games since returning from a torn quadriceps tendon suffered in last season’s playoffs. Leonard, the Spurs’ leading scorer and top defender, has yet to play due to lingering teninopathy in his quad.

The team has announced no specific target date for Leonard’s return. Popovich has repeated “sooner rather than later” so often it is beginning to sound like a mantra. Yet it is clear from Leonard’s place in the rehab process that his 2017-18 debut is growing near.

“He’s starting to feel in a little bit better shape and feeling more confident,” Popovich said.

Source: Jeff McDonald of the San Antonio Express-News

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Pacers to Host 2021 NBA All-Star Game

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Indianapolis will host the 2021 NBA All-Star Game, the league announced Wednesday.

The game will be held at the Pacers’ Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, which hasn’t hosted the event since 1985, when it was played at the Hoosier Dome.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN

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Clippers’ Austin Rivers Leaves Game with Concussion

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Clippers guard Austin Rivers suffered a concussion during Wednesday’s 106-95 win over the Orlando Magic and will not play Friday night against the Washington Wizards, the Clippers announced.

Rivers left the game after taking an elbow to the head in the final seconds of the second quarter. He did not return.

Source: ESPN

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Warriors’ Green Doubtful for Thursday’s Game

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Golden State Warriors power forward Draymond Green, who is nursing a sore right shoulder, was ruled as doubtful for Thursday night’s home game against the Dallas Mavericks.

The reigning NBA Defensive Player of the Year did not participate in practice on Wednesday. Warriors’ head coach Steve Kerr said the team is just being cautious, noting that it’s not a serious matter.

Source: Chris Haynes of ESPN

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