The LA Clippers lost small forward Kawhi Leonard to an ACL tear in his right knee close to the end of last season. He underwent surgery on July 13, 2020, and was ruled out for the entirety of this season.
However, new updates have suggested he might return this season as his recovery seems to be ahead of schedule. With Leonard out, Paul George has had to carry the team. But with George out due to an elbow injury, the Clippers have plummeted, losing five of their last seven games without him.
However, their struggles might soon come to an end. Skip Bayless revealed on "Skip and Shannon: Undisputed" that the 2015 steals champion might return earlier than expected.
"I'm told Kawhi has been working out at such a high level that Uncle Dennis, his chief adviser is starting to say ... wait a sec ... look at the West," Bayless said. "Could you guys be maybe the deepest team in the West."
Could Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and the LA Clippers better than LeBron James' team?
Kawhi Leonard was named to the NBA's 75th anniversary team, and rightfully so. "The Claw," as he is fondly called, has been one of the best players in the league for more than five years.
Leonard's return will be a huge positive for the Clippers (19-20), with George's injury being re-evaluated in a few weeks. If the band can get together again, they could make a playoff run – and be a dangerous team once they get there.
Bayless said the return of the two stars can only mean good news for the Clippers, and that this could be the year for the 30-year-old to make a massive comeback. He also said LeBron James' team would be in trouble if that happened as the Clippers would be a better team in the West than the Lakers.
"If Paul George has also a torn ligament in the elbow of his shooting arm ... Reggie Jackson said yesterday he's feeling pretty good," Bayless said. "So is it possible that Paul George can come back at 90% and Kawhi can come back at close to 100%? Maybe! They did re-sign Reggie Jackson – playoff star last year.
"So, he's now thinking strongly as Chris Haines reported on TNT, about maybe this would be the year to come back. Which I was hoping ... I kept telling you, well, if Kawhi can come back you're going to be in trouble, because that team with Paul, George and Kawhi and all the rest would be better than LeBron’s team."