There will only be 10 games left in the regular season for Leonard to return, but for Manu Ginobili, he's going on the premise that Leonard is not coming back at all.
"He's not coming back, for me he's not coming back because he's not helping", said Ginobili during the team's shootaround on Wednesday.
Ginobili's take, however, could also be seen as a way of saying that the Spurs can't rely on expecting to have him back soon. I guess you guys made us fall for it. "We fell for it a week ago again.But we have to think that he's not coming back, that we are who we are, and that we got to fight without him". But for us, it's about focusing on what we can on the court.
Popovich said, "no, why would we do that?" when asked Monday whether there was a timetable in mind for making a decision to shelve Leonard for the rest of the season. "And until he gets cleared, we can't make a decision on when he's coming back. But that clearance has to be obtained first".
"Popovich and sources within the organization have long maintained that the team will continue to err on the side of caution when it comes to Leonard's injury", Wright said.
Fans got excited when ESPN's Lisa Salters and Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Spurs were optimistic Leonard would return against the New Orleans Pelicans on March 15. Leonard was instead absent during San Antonio's 98-93 victory.
The Spurs (41-30) are now tied for fifth place with the New Orleans Pelicans in the Western Conference.
During their four-game streak, they have not allowed a team to score more than 20 points in the fourth quarter.
San Antonio sits at No. 5 in the Western Conference standings, and hasn't missed the playoffs since the 1996-97 season.