Leonard, who only played nine games last season with the San Antonio Spurs due to a lingering quadriceps injury, has been a force this year with the Raptors. Many were wondering if Kawhi Leonard was going to be the same dominant player after missing almost a year of basketball and the two-time Defensive Player of the Year has shown that he’s still an elite player.
Scott Brooks said “you could probably say” Kawhi Leonard is the best two-way player in basketball.
— Fred Katz (@FredKatz) November 23, 2018
In 13 games this season, Kawhi Leonard is averaging 24.2 points, 8.2 rebounds, and 3.2 assists while shooting 47.5 percent from the field, 34.0 percent from beyond the arc, and 85.1 percent from the free-throw line. The Raptors enter their Friday matchup against the Wizards with a record of 15-4, which is the best record in the Eastern Conference.
When you’re talking about elite two-way studs, Leonard, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Paul George, the Golden State Warriors’ Klay Thompson, and the Philadelphia 76ers’ Jimmy Butler are usually the players that come to mind. Kawhi Leonard is the only one out of that group to win a Defensive Player of the Year award. Leonard’s hands and defensive instincts make him a pest against scorers. His offensive game isn’t too shabby either, as Leonard is able to get to his spots with ease and make difficult shots when defenders are sticking him closely.