The Spurs will start the 2017-18 season as one of the top threats to the Warriors in the Western Conference, but, as we learned last year, their ability to compete with Golden State will hinge on the health of star forward Kawhi Leonard.
Leonard was injured in Game 1 of their Western Conference Finals series, as the Spurs never recovered from his loss and ended up swept by the Warriors. While his ankle injury has fully healed going into this season, the organization announced on Saturday that he is battling right quadriceps tendinopathy that will keep him out of the entire preseason.
Leonard missing the preseason isn’t a big deal for the Spurs, so long as it isn’t an injury that lingers into the regular season. It’s possible that this is simply a precautionary measure from the Spurs. However, if it does cause him to miss time or be limited during the regular season, that’s obviously a significant blow to the Spurs as Leonard’s presence is what turns them from a solid team into an elite team in the NBA by what he does on both ends of the floor
With a tendon injury, it’s wise to limit his time on the floor as tendinopathy can be caused by a tendon being overworked, and knowing the Spurs they will likely be very cautious of Leonard going forward to ensure he’s able to be at his best come playoff time.