The LA Clippers will have to try to secure their first trip to the Western Conference Finals without Kawhi Leonard in Game 6.
Coach Ty Lue said Leonard is out for Friday’s game against the Utah Jazz with a sprained right knee. Leonard could miss the rest of this series and longer after he injured his knee on a drive while fouled in the fourth quarter of Game 4. Leonard left the floor for good with 4:35 remaining.
The forward traveled with the team to Salt Lake City on Tuesday, but then returned to Los Angeles after telling teammates he would be out for Game 5, which the Clippers won 119-111 at Utah in part thanks to 37 points. , 16 rebounds and five assists from Paul George. LA leads 3-2 in the best-of-7 series.
Lue said before Game 5 that there was no date for Leonard’s return as the team awaits more test results.
The Clippers seek their first trip to the Western Conference Finals in 50 seasons, the longest a team has gone without reaching the penultimate round of the League Playoffs among active NFL / NBA / MLB / NHL franchises , according to ESPN Stats & Information.
Last year, the Clippers had three chances to reach the Conference Finals, but blew a 3-1 lead and were eliminated by the Denver Nuggets.