'Worst Superstar in the History of Sports': Stephen A Smith Bashes Kawhi Leonard for his Absence From Playoff Games

Stephen A Smith Bashes Kwahi Leonard during a debate on First Take because of his inability to be available for the playoff games.

Published on May 30, 2024  |  10:41 PM IST |  58.5K
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Stephen A Smith Bashes Kawhi Leonard

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith was in no mood to let easily go of Kawhi Leonard after the Clippers star missed out on the playoffs again with the franchise this season. In a discussion regarding whether Paul George should leave the Clippers to team up with Joel Embiid next season, Smith went all guns blazing after the 2-time NBA champion. 

Kawhi Leonard

What did Stephen A Smith say?

Smith said on First Take, "This is not a conversation about his ability when healthy. I can make a case this is the worst superstar in sports history. He is a nightmare."

He added, ‘Kawhi has averaged just 40.2 gamers per season with the Clippers during his four-year stay till now. He played 68 games this season and then missed the playoffs. He has missed 15 out of the last 19 playoff games for the Clippers.’ Smith didn’t stop there and reminded everyone of how the Clippers hadn’t reached a conference final with Kawhi in the team and they reached the finals when he was sidelined from the team because of an injury. 


Why did Kawhi Leonard miss the playoffs?

After missing the last eight games of the regular season due to right knee pain, Leonard missed Games 1 and 4 of the series. Playing in 68 games this season made this the highest game-playing season for him since the 2016–17 San Antonio campaign. He averaged 23.7 points, 3.7 assists and 6.1 rebounds this season. In the latter half of his NBA career, injuries have hampered Leonard frequently. Since joining the Clippers in 2019, he has never participated in a full season of play without an injury.

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After suffering a serious injury to his right knee during the 2021 playoffs, he had to undergo major surgery and missed the entire 2021–2022 season. The Clippers made it to their first-ever Western Conference Finals that spring, but Leonard was sidelined the entire time. 

ALSO READ: Stephen A. Smith Net Worth - ESPN Contract, Salary and Endorsements 

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