I have a lot of respect for Kawhi. I don't think it's outside the realm of possibility. And you have to believe.
"Just very painful because I tweaked it before", Leonard said of the injury.
Curry withstood a sprained left ankle to collect 29 points and 11 assists as the Golden State Warriors edged the Denver Nuggets 110-108 to take a 2-1 series lead in the first round of the 2013 Western Conference playoffs.
Leonard hobbled out of Sunday's defeat in Oakland in the third quarter after Pachulia followed through as he attempted to close down Leonard as the Spurs star attempted a jump shot.
Popovich acknowledged that the Spurs will have a much more hard time beating the top-seeded Warriors without Leonard, who had 26 points before leaving Sunday's game.
At the time of the injury, Leonard had 26 points and eight rebounds and the team was ahead by 23.
Amusing how things can change over the years, isn't it? That said, we'll never really know anyway, and unfortunately what's done is done. "With the team that we have, the veteran guys, their composure, and then the firepower, we know that we're always going to have a chance". But when you're one of the best players in the league, playing on the NBA's postseason stage against the league's best team, it becomes a big deal. And while it looked like it would be inevitable that the Warriors would take the lead by the end of the 3rd or the start of the 4th, that didn't happen until very late in the game.
The Warriors offense was humming from the start as they racked up 23 assists in the first half alone, after handing out 22 - a minute total, for them - in Game 1.
"Come on man, how much more hard is it?" However, the Spurs still have a chance in this series (even without Leonard).
Now, you may say, that's not Popovich's style and certainly not the Spurs' during his watch. "Everybody else was in the other category". They also have LaMarcus Aldridge, who has been nothing short of sensational recently.
It was the second time Kawhi rolled his ankle in the game, and after making two free throws, he did not return. "He can't be timid", Popovich said.
"If you need extra motivation in the Western Conference finals", Green said, "you've got another problem on your hands".
Aldridge attributed his shoddy performance to taking "the wrong approach". What I saw, he kept moving in that direction after he contested the shot. "I'd probably list him as questionable". At times there were three guys there. It wasn't just his shooting touch either, he was weaving in and out of defenders with little test, and breaking them down for easy buckets.
Leonard injured the ankle during Game 5 of the Spurs' previous series against Houston. They may not have Leonard for Game 2, but they have the right coaching and the right mindset to come away with a possible victory.
"The waitress comes over and we have the same thing on our mind".
The NBA said Monday that Pachulia will not face any discipline and that the play will stand as called.
And Leonard will not play in Game 2 on Tuesday night.
"But it's a game and there are some things that you can't control".