Back spasms knock out Clippers’ Kawhi Leonard for Boston game

 Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard drives by Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane and center Xavier Tillman.
Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard drives between Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane (22) and center Xavier Tillman (2) during the second half on Friday in Memphis, Tenn.
(Brandon Dill / Associated Press)

Back spasms first cut Kawhi Leonard’s warmup short Tuesday in Boston. Then, just after tipoff, they knocked him out of the game altogether.

Leonard was replaced in the starting lineup by backup guard Reggie Jackson just before tipoff against the Celtics, then was ruled out midway through the opening quarter.

It was the sixth game Leonard has missed this season because of injury. He previously was sidelined with a facial laceration and a contusion on his lower left leg. He has also missed two games while placed in the league’s health and safety protocols.


The Clippers have one game remaining, Thursday in Washington, before the All-Star break. Leonard has been voted a starter in Sunday’s All-Star showcase in Atlanta.

Participants for the NBA All-Star slam dunk, three-point shooting and skills contests were announced Tuesday in advance of Sunday’s exhibition in Atlanta.

March 2, 2021