Kawhi Leonard’s top five moments of the 2019-20 season

LA Clippers Kawhi Leonard (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
LA Clippers Kawhi Leonard (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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4. Triple Double vs. Miami Heat – January 24, 2020

Kawhi’s first career triple-double came against the Miami Heat, and star Jimmy Butler on January 24 of this year. Leonard’s previous on-court meeting with Butler ended with Kawhi hitting his unbelievable, game seven buzzer-beater to end Jimmy Bucket’s and the Philadelphia 76ers 2019 season. The game would be Butler’s last as a Sixer, as he left Philadelphia in the off-season for the sunny beaches of Miami.

Things weren’t so sunny for Butler and the Heat when the Clippers came to town and took a 122-117 victory from Miami. The Clippers didn’t come out the gates on fire that night, taking an early 15-point first quarter deficit before turning things around for the evening. Los Angeles clawed their way back to cut the lead to two at halftime, and once they took a 86-83 lead with a little more than three minutes to play in the third quarter, they never trailed again.

Leonard put up 33 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists (plus a steal and a block) to best Butler’s 20-8-7 stat line for the night. Kawhi scored 26 of his 33 points in the second half and surprised quite a few members of the Heat with the fact that it was his first career triple-double. You can practically see head coach Eric Spoelstra’s jaw hit the floor when just reading that he said “What do you mean, first triple-double? Of his career? Wow. That is a surprise. He’s as complete a player (as there is) in this league.”

Of course, Leonard didn’t need to get his first career triple-double to establish the fact that he’s one of the best players in the league today, but it is a nice accomplishment to add to his ever-growing resume.