LA Clippers: Kawhi Leonard, mind games, and The Art of War

LA Clippers Kawhi Leonard (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
LA Clippers Kawhi Leonard (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /
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Kawhi Leonard LA Clippers
Kawhi Leonard (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

“He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight”

The simple message of choosing your battles wisely works in all aspects of life. You need to know what’s worth fighting for and when to take a back seat. When to stand up for something and when to hold back.

You need to know when…to hold them, know when to fold them, know when to walk away, and know when to run.

Kawhi knows that the ultimate goal in any season is a championship, and that career success comes from longevity and the ability to perform at a high level over a long period of time.

He knows when to play, and play hard, and he knows when to rest.

The idea of “load management” (or “injury management” as it is now more frequently referred to) can be a bit controversial. Fans want to know they’re going to see their favorite players when they pay top dollar to attend a game live. The league (and broadcast networks) want to showcase marquee superstars on the floor, and not on the bench in street clothes.

But Kawhi knows what’s good in the long-term. For himself, for the franchise’s he belongs to, and for the fans. He’s been ahead of the curve in terms of proper rest and recovery and it has helped him lead the Raptors to an NBA title just one season removed from being severely limited in action due to major injuries.

Knowing when to play and when to rest has kept Kawhi in top playing shape to compete for an NBA title with the third team in his nine-year career.