Lakers assistant coach Phil Handy gives Clippers star Kawhi Leonard one of the highest of praises possible in the NBA world.
While he was still in playing condition, Kawhi Leonard was playing at an incredible level for the Clippers. The star was putting up incredible numbers and even led the team to an amazing comeback victory against the Dallas Mavericks.
Like it or not, it is clear the player will be considered one of the greatest of all time. But, since last season, the star hasn’t quite been compared to the best in the league.
Truth be told, given his performances, it would be an insult to his greatness, to not include him in the conversation of the best NBA player right now. He quite simply has what it takes to warrant that, and it seems Phil Handy agrees.
The Lakers assistant coach recently got on the ‘All the Smoke’ podcast alongside Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson. And here, he had some stunning but undeniable words about Kawhi Leonard.
“Kawhi Leonard is cut from the same cloth as Kobe, LeBron and MJ”: Phil Handy
Kawhi Leonard has always had the physical tools to be one of the greatest NBA players ever. He is such a dominant offensive player now, that fans sometimes forget he came into the league as a defensive prospect.
Frankly, we believe the Terminator is in the top-3 two-way players in the NBA right now, when he is healthy. However, it seems that Phil Handy wanted to take it a step further. Here is what he had to say about the player’s abilities.
“Kawhi is cut from the same cloth as Kobe, LeBron as MJ… The first time we worked out together after the trade stuff cleared, I reached out to him. I said I’m just excited to build with you, and he was like ‘when are you coming to San Diego?’
He continued on the topic.
“We got in the gym, and he said ‘look coach, I like the gym quiet, I don’t like people in the gym. I like to get my work in.’ That set the tone. He’s just one of those dudes that really just about getting better.”
“I like the gym to be quiet. I don’t like the people, I don’t like the noise, I just want to get my work in” – Kawhi Leonard to Phil Handy when they first started training together 💯 (@94feetofgame )
(Via The Posecast) pic.twitter.com/gFcEMmjIvq
— BasketballNews.com (@basketbllnews) February 4, 2021
It’s honestly a shame that we as fans don’t get to witness Kawhi Leonard’s greatness during this postseason. There is fear that the player damaged his ACL, and rumors suggest he could even miss the rest of the season.
While Paul George has been downright incredible for the franchise in his absence, they clearly aren’t at full power right now. So, it will be interesting to see how far the team can get without the Terminator on the floor.
We wish Kawhi Leonard a speedy recovery.