NBA clarifies Leonard’s “load management”

The NBA received a lot of backlash following the announcement of Kawhi Leonard missing tonight’s nationally televised game against the Milwaukee Bucks due to “load management.”

Spokesperson Mike Bass clarified his absence, essentially pointing out that the “load management” isn’t for the usual “rest” that veteran players will take, but managing a knee injury.

Apparently the Clippers are being very compliant with the league regarding the injury and decision to sit their superstar.

National criticism came across all platforms, most notably ESPN’s Doris Burke.

ESPN is broadcasting the game tonight.

Nick Wright of Fox Sports chimed in as well.

Leonard is expected to play on the second leg of the Clippers’ back-to-back, Thursday night against the Portland Trailblazers on TNT.

It’s worth noting that the Bucks sat Kyle Korver on the front end of a back-to-back last weekend. The 38-year old veteran didn’t play against the Orlando Magic on Friday night, but was ready to go on Saturday against the Toronto Raptors.

Although the NBA is working to adjust schedules and travel to accommodate a more player friendly 82-game season, expect to see this trend more and more as we get later into the year.

The Bucks opened as one-point Vegas underdogs to Los Angeles. The line moved to Milwaukee being favored by as many as 6.5 with Leonard out.