OAKLAND — While accusations were flying and Twitter was filled with suspicion that Kawhi Leonard was injured because Zaza Pachulia slipped his foot in to cause it, the players involved were having none of it.
“Did he step under it?” Leonard repeated when asked about the play. “Like on purpose? No. He was just contesting a shot. The shot clock was coming down. I’ll have to see the play.”
Leonard had 26 points, eight rebounds and three assists before rolling his left ankle and having to leave the game with 7:53 left in the third quarter. Just a few minutes earlier, Leonard has tweaked the same ankle when he missed a shot from deep in the left corner and landed on somebody’s foot on the Spurs’ bench.
Leonard was fouled by Pachulia out on the left wing, went to the line to make two free throws and then limped off the floor.
“When you are 6-11 and you play hard you get blamed for a lot of things,” Pachulia said. “Absolutely not.”
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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