Kawhi Leonard did to OKC’s Kevin Durant what only a leg injury could do over the last few years — he slowed him down. You can’t say stopped him. Durant scored 22 on 6-of-19 shooting, but if Durant makes less than one of three, the opposing team usually has a pretty good shot at victory. The Spurs did have a shot in this season opener against Durant, Russell Westbrook and rookie head coach Billy Donovan. But Donovan notched his first NBA win, 112 -106. Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will have to wait a little longer to get his 1,023rd victory.
Leonard, the NBA Finals MVP in 2014, led the balanced Spurs in scoring last year with just 16 points a game. In the Thunder opener he doubled that, scoring 32 within the flow of the offense shooting better than 50% from the floor. It marks a career regular season high for Leonard, who somehow keeps getting left out of the regular season MVP conversation, despite combining offensive prowess with being the best defensive player in the league. Leonard won the NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award last year.