Game 2 of Western Conference Finals

San Antonio Spurs list Kawhi Leonard, David Lee doubtful for Game 4

Fran Blinebury

SAN ANTONIO — Even though the wounded Spurs are down to their last desperate chance against the Warriors, don’t expect Kawhi Leonard to make a dramatic ride to the rescue in Game 4 on Monday night.

“It wouldn’t make much sense,” coach Gregg Popovich said on Sunday. “If he’s unable to play yesterday, I don’t think there’s going to be a miraculous healing by tomorrow.”

Leonard (sprained left ankle) has not played since the 7:55 mark in the third quarter of Game 1 in the Western Conference finals when he landed on the foot of Golden State center Zaza Pachulia. The Spurs built a 25-point advantage in that game, led by 23 when Leonard limped off, and then collapsed without their star forward in a 113-111 loss. They lost the next two games 136-100 and 120-108 and are down 3-0 in the series. No team in NBA history has ever come back to win a from such a hole in the playoffs.

The San Antonio injury report officially lists both Leonard and David Lee as “doubtful” for Game 4.

Lee injured his left knee while scoring on a layup in the first quarter of Game 3 and had to leave the court in a wheelchair. One early report said that he’d torn his left meniscus (knee). But upon further examination, the Spurs now believe Lee’s injury isn’t as severe. One report says Lee has a partially torn patellar tendon.

“I don’t think it’s serious,” Popovich said. “He did an MRI, but we haven’t gotten the results yet. He’s got like a bruise or something like that. It stiffened up on him, it didn’t really swell up, it just got stiff. He’ll probably be out.”

Fran Blinebury has covered the NBA since 1977. You can e-mail him here, find his archive here and follow him on Twitter.

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