Essentially, Leonard was surprised that the National Basketball Association would just come out and say he has a knee injury especially when the Clippers were trying to keep the specifics under wraps.
The Clippers have a meticulous paper trail excusing Leonard for his load management absence against the Milwaukee Bucks, the second nationally televised game he has missed in the span of eight regular-season games.
Rivers echoed how good Leonard has felt before Wednesday's game but wouldn't go into any further detail on Thursday after learning of the league's fine. Doc Rivers said Kawhi feels great, but only thanks to being able to take time off.
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Mapimpi also recalled how nervous he was ahead of the final, and how fellow wing Kolbe helped him. This year's lineup included six non-white players, including Kolisi.
Because Rivers' statement was in opposition to what the league and Clippers team doctors were claiming, the Clippers organization was hit with the fine. Rivers, in his comments to Clutch Points, cited Leonard's minutes in the playoffs for Toronto as a reason for the Clippers being cautious with him early this season.
Rivers indicated he was disappointed by the fine.
Twice this season, Leonard has sat out the first game of a back-to-back set, the previous time coming in a Clippers loss at Utah in what was also a nationally televised game on October 30. Asked if there is a middle ground between those two competing mandates, the veteran coach said, "I'm scared to answer".
While leading the Bucks to a 3-1 record, Antetokounmpo averaged 25.3 points, 13.3 rebounds, 6.5 assists, 2.0 blocks and 1.0 steal per game while shooting 57.8% from the field. "That's my answer. I just won't answer". "I'm not getting into it".