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Sports Raptors undone by Clippers’ depth in Kawhi’s return to Toronto

15:22  12 december  2019
15:22  12 december  2019 Source:   sportsnet.ca

Kawhi set to play vs. Raptors in return to Toronto

  Kawhi set to play vs. Raptors in return to Toronto The Los Angeles Clippers released their injury report ahead of Wednesday's much-anticipated road game against the Toronto Raptors, and it appears superstar forward Kawhi Leonard is ready to go. Barring any late developments, Leonard will play in the Clippers' annual one-game pilgrimage north of the border, allowing former teammates and Raptors fans alike an opportunity to welcome back a player crucial to the 2019 championship run. The festivities will begin in earnest with a pregame ring ceremony for the reigning Finals MVP.Whether Leonard would actually play in his Toronto homecoming was a subject of speculation.

With the Los Angeles Clippers in Toronto , that meant Kawhi Leonard was going to receive his gigantic, 650-plus diamond encrusted championship ring and be honoured like no other returning former Toronto athlete had ever been honoured before. And what a tribute it was.

Kawhi Leonard Gets His Raptors Championship Ring In Toronto Return ! Clippers vs Raptors December 11, 2019-20 NBA Season 警告:視頻禁止轉載!!! 警告:視頻禁止轉載!!! -

TORONTO – It was an emotional Wednesday night at Scotiabank Arena.

With the Los Angeles Clippers in Toronto, that meant Kawhi Leonard was going to receive his gigantic, 650-plus diamond encrusted championship ring and be honoured like no other returning former Toronto athlete had ever been honoured before.

And what a tribute it was.

It included a very cool re-enactment of the steps Leonard took when he hit “The Shot” in Game 7 against the Philadelphia 76ers and ended with a bout of fake tears, a genuine smile and a hug with Kyle Lowry at centre court.

Kawhi thanks 'amazing' Raptors fans for support during title run

  Kawhi thanks 'amazing' Raptors fans for support during title run Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard's heroic lone season with the reigning NBA champions Toronto Raptors is still celebrated by many throughout Canada. However, Leonard isn't so sure he'll be greeted exclusively with cheers in his return game to Toronto on Wednesday night. "I mean, there will be some cheers but definitely I think more boos because they want to win the game," Leonard told reporters, according to TSN's Josh Lewenberg.However, Leonard isn't so sure he'll be greeted exclusively with cheers in his return game to Toronto on Wednesday night.

On his return to Toronto after leading the Raptors to the 2019 NBA title, LA Clippers wing Kawhi Leonard gets a big cheer, a tribute video including "The

Los Angeles Clippers vs Toronto Raptors Full Game Highlights In Kawhi Leonard' s Toronto Return ! Los Angeles Clippers vs Toronto Raptors December 11, 2019-20 NBA Season.

“It was great. It was a great moment,” said Leonard of the ceremony held for him. “[The Raptors] did a great job putting that together, having all the players out there and everyone waiting, standing there and presenting my ring. It was great.”

But beyond the pomp, circumstance and genuine emotion seen in the lead-up of this Wednesday-evening game between the Clippers and Toronto Raptors, the game itself was more indicative of a different aspect of the championship celebration Leonard was showered with: his championship ring itself.

As part of the design of every Raptors title ring is a custom inscription, and in Leonard’s case the logo in there reminds him to wear the gigantic piece on his middle finger.

“I have, like, an ‘Eff You’ symbol.”

Leonard scores 23 points to lead Clippers to 112-92 rout of Raptors

  Leonard scores 23 points to lead Clippers to 112-92 rout of Raptors On a night Kawhi Leonard was celebrated by Toronto Raptors fans, he showed them just what they're missing this season. In his first trip to Toronto since leaving for Los Angeles in the off-season, Leonard had 23 points to lead the Clippers to a 112-92 rout of his former team.

In Kawhi Leonard' s first return to Toronto since bringing the Raptors their first NBA championship, Leonard leads the LA Clippers with 23 points, six

Kawhi Leonard’ s return was a momentary diversion, but it didn’t alter the current funk in which the Raptors find themselves. Leonard got the ring and the nice welcome he earned for his one-year stay here in Toronto , but if he was looking for a good game from his former teammates

This is pretty fitting, because as he soaked in the warm adoration of the Toronto crowd and appeared to genuinely enjoy the tribute his former team prepared for him, he and his new squad went out and figuratively stuck a big ol’ middle finger up to the same crowd and Raptors organization as the Clippers routed Toronto, 112-92.

Leonard finished with a team-high 23 points on an efficient 8-of-14 shooting from the floor, but even though this was a night that was basically entirely dedicated to him, Leonard wasn’t necessarily the reason why the Clippers were so successful.

As is becoming something of a norm when teams face the Raptors, the Clippers offence used their aggressive defensive schemes against them and moved the ball to the open man.

“I thought our passing in that first half was the best we’d had all year,” said Clippers coach Doc Rivers. “Talked about it in shootaround, just let them come, look around, find your guy. We did it because of the traps and our guys were patient.”

Doc blown away by Raptors' tribute to Kawhi: 'That's the best I've seen'

  Doc blown away by Raptors' tribute to Kawhi: 'That's the best I've seen' Doc blown away by Raptors' tribute to Kawhi: 'That's the best I've seen'But by all accounts, there was little - if any - animosity toward the "Fun Guy," with all parties showering the 28-year-old Leonard with appreciation for helping the city capture its maiden NBA title.

LA Clippers vs Toronto Raptors LIVE HD 12/11 | Beast Kawhi on 2019-20 NBA Season ESPN SportsCenter 1 240 зрителей. UNDISPUTED - Skip Bayless reacts to Kawhi Leonard RETURNS to Toronto since leaving in FA - Продолжительность: 10:50 Skip and Shannon 30 115 просмотров.

NBA GameTime "PREVIEW" Clippers vs Raptor : Kawhi returns to Toronto to receive championship ring # clippers # kawhi .

In this regard, Leonard was absolutely fantastic as he would often calmly take double teams and dish out when needed, never forcing his offence.

“Seeing the game plan they were running – sending two to the ball with me and Paul [George], doubling on me on post-ups – when that happens I’m going to take my time and wait for an open shot to come. That’s what I try to do.”

Leonard finished with six assists on the evening, but more important than just the counting stat, the doubles he would take and then give the ball up so regularly Wednesday night spoke to a level of trust he has with his Clippers teammates, and for good reason.

“This is as deep a talented team as there is in the league,” said Raptors coach Nick Nurse of the Clippers before the game. “They’ve just got players coming non-stop in off the bench.”

Yes, few teams in the NBA are as deep and talented as the Clippers are, meaning, as the Raptors found out, to be so aggressive trying to trap and contain just one or two guys is folly.

“We’ve got four guys that’s averaging 20 points a game right now,” said Lou Williams, a former Raptor who received his own, much smaller video tribute Wednesday. “So it’s kind of difficult to trap teams like that when you have that type of depth. Especially when you have guys who understand their roles and know the best ways to counter that.”

Scott Stinson: Kawhi’s return a chance for Raptors fans to love the star who didn't love them back

  Scott Stinson: Kawhi’s return a chance for Raptors fans to love the star who didn't love them back Scott Stinson: Kawhi’s return a chance for Raptors fans to love the star who didn't love them backTORONTO • Players and coaches are generally allergic to the idea of reflection. Whether it was a big loss, a big win, or any of the possibilities in between, no one is much interested in looking back on it.

Kawhi Receives Championship Ring, Drops 23 PTS in Return to Toronto Kawhi Leonard paces the LA Clippers to victory over the Toronto Raptors with 23 PTS, 6

Chris Brouusard IMPRESSIVE Raptors drop tribute video for Kawhi ’ s return as Clippers visit Toronto

Williams finished Wednesday with 18 points – 13 alone in the second quarter – and he and Leonard were two of seven Clippers to score in digits on the night.

This overwhelming wave, as Nurse alluded to, of talent from all over the Clippers lineup was the real reason why L.A. did Toronto in, not just Leonard. It’s also probably a big reason why Leonard ultimately decided to choose the Clippers over the Raptors in free agency in the summer.

“On the basketball end of it I think he realized we’re a talented team and we had some really solid pieces and we did some pretty OK things,” Williams said of why Leonard perhaps chose the Clippers in free agency. “We were a 50-win team and he probably thought that he and Paul could be the pieces that he needs to get us over the hump.”

Adding superstar talent to a solid, deep roster is a pretty good recipe for success, as the Raptors learned with Leonard on their side last season.

Having both depth and talent is a luxury every team wishes they had. The Clippers do have it, and on Wednesday, as Leonard was receiving that middle-finger reminder of a ring, he and his team may also been sending a symbolic gesture to the rest of the league that they’re coming, and they’re coming hard.

Report: Kawhi's uncle asked Lakers for part ownership in free-agency talks .
Uncle Dennis wanted a lot from the Los Angeles Lakers this summer. Dennis Robertson, the infamous relative and confidant of Los Angeles Clippers star Kawhi Leonard, who accompanied the forward during his free-agency negotiations, asked Lakers owner Jeanie Buss for part ownership of the franchise, a private plane, a house, and guaranteed endorsement money if Leonard signed with the team, reports Sam Amick of The Athletic. Robertson reportedlyDennis Robertson, the infamous relative and confidant of Los Angeles Clippers star Kawhi Leonard, who accompanied the forward during his free-agency negotiations, asked Lakers owner Jeanie Buss for part ownership of the franchise, a private plane, a house, and guaranteed endorsement money i

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