Is Kawhi Leonard playing tonight? Latest roster updates for Kings vs. Clippers

Sacramento Kings v Los Angeles Clippers
Sacramento Kings v Los Angeles Clippers / Harry How/GettyImages

The Sacramento Kings have a lot of work to do if they want to secure a playoff spot, and it starts tonight against the LA Clippers. With a 37-18 record, Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, and company have been one of the best squads in the West all season long. 

The Kings have not fared well against them so far, losing both of the previous matchups by quite a margin. The Clippers’ length, scoring talent, and defensive strength bother the Kings immensely. 

Tonight will be a tough battle, but a win would be huge for Sacramento, so De’Aaron Fox, Domantas Sabonis, and their squad have to come out with the best possible energy. 

Is Kawhi Leonard playing tonight?

In recent years, Kawhi Leonard has not been the poster child for availability but this season has been different. He has played in 50 of the team’s 55 games so far and will be available tonight as well. 

The only Clippers players on the injury report are Norman Powell, who is questionable with a right ankle sprain, and Paul George, who is questionable with left knee soreness. Three of the Clippers’ quartet of future Hall of Famers—Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, James Harden, and Russell Westbrook—will definitely play, however. 

What does that mean for the Kings?

For the Kings, this means that every single player who steps onto the court will have to be locked in defensively. The Clippers have too many offensive weapons to allow defensive mistakes, meaning that everyone will have to step up. 

Even if Keegan Murray does a solid job guarding Kawhi Leonard and De’Aaron Fox bothers James Harden, it might not be enough because that still leaves Terance Mann and potentially Paul George on the perimeter. Especially Kevin Huerter and Harrison Barnes will have to battle and not allow any Clippers to beat them without any resistance. Perimeter defense has haunted the Kings all season long, and there is no better moment to figure it out than tonight. 

Who will be available for the Kings?

The Kings are going into this game rather healthy as well. They will be without Sasha Vezenkov, who is still dealing with an ankle sprain, and their three G League assignments. Alex Len is questionable with an illness, but all the main guys are available.