Every season, it seems the Spurs always find a way.

They always find a way to compete, they always find a way to fight, they always find a way to win. For decades, the team has prided itself on being a world-class basketball organization.

But no matter who you are, stars mean everything in pro-basketball. That’s how its always been, that’s how it will always be.

Unfortunately for the Spurs, their star may be shut down for the rest of 2017.

Via Michael C. Wright on ESPN, Gregg Popovich admitted that Kawhi Leonard’s healing process is going slower than expected:

“He’s just coming along more slowly for whatever reason. It’s just been more difficult for him to get through the rehab routine. So his body hasn’t reacted the same way as Tony. Tony’s at the point where he’s been going five-on-five and that kind of thing. He’s not totally confident. It’ll be a few more weeks. But he’s definitely going the right direction. And so is Kawhi. It’s just been taking a little bit longer.” When asked if Leonard would have to go through the same process as Parker to be cleared to play, Popovich said, “Sure. I wouldn’t want him to go right from rehab to jumping on the court. He’s got to go three-on-three, five-on-five, feel comfortable because, in the end, that confidence is what’s going to…anybody who’s been out for any length of time has to get that back; even if the doctors say, ‘Yep, you’re ready to go.’ You’re really not until you’re mentally ready to go.”

Pop admitted that Tony Parker was in a better place physically right now, and seeing as to how Parker may not even come back until December, Leonard could be out for quite a while… certainly much longer than expected.

As an early pre-season MVP candidate, Kawhi and the Spurs had high hopes entering the new season. But when a seemingly minor injury became something more, it made the team much less versatile.

Will they have the power to make a respectable run in Kawhi’s absence, or is he too important for the team to continue living without? Until he comes back, that’s the question the team will look to answer as the season around them continues to press on…

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