“It Was Like Watching Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan as a Kid……Watching Him Take Giannis’ Heart”: AAU Trainer of Kawhi Leonard on Seeing Him in the NBA Playoffs

Published 01/04/2022, 8:16 PM EST
May 22, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; LA Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard (2) tries to move thew bad past Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) during the second quarter of game one in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Clippers allegedly formed the dynamic duo of Paul George and Kawhi Leonard to compete with the Lakers’ LeBron James and Anthony Davis. While this duo has undoubtedly shown sparks of its potential, it has come nowhere close to winning an NBA Championship. Last season, their team made the Western Conference Finals despite losing Kawhi Leonard in the playoffs early on. They lost the series to Chris Paul’s Phoenix Suns.

Kawhi Leonard’s impact on a team is irreplaceable and crucial to its success. From San Antonio to Toronto and the Clippers, they ran almost all of their plays around Kawhi whenever he was on the floor. Some fans have even been so amazed by his impact, they make comparisons of a prime Kawhi Leonard with that of Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant. Among those fans is also Kawhi’s AAU coach, who recently revealed how mesmerized he was while watching Kawhi play for Toronto, especially in the Playoffs.

MONTREAL, QC – OCTOBER 10: Toronto Raptors Forward OG Anunoby (3) tracks the play during the Brooklyn Nets versus the Toronto Raptors preseason game on October 10, 2018, at Bell Centre in Montreal, QC (Photo by Icon Sportswire)

Kawhi Leonard’s AAU coach admits he reminded him of Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan

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According to sources, Kawhi‘s AAU coach and skills trainer Clint Parks recently revealed what it was like to watch his student in the NBA. He heaped nothing but praises for the two-time NBA Finals MVP.

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He said, “It was like watching Kobe or MJ as a kid; like, that’s how I felt when I was watching him in the playoffs. Especially against the Sixers. He couldn’t miss, it was nothing he couldn’t do. And then even watching him against the Bucks, after being down 2-0 and just watching him take Giannis’ heart.”

What does this mean for Kawhi Leonard?

Kawhi Leonard has not played NBA basketball since last season. Although, it had been predicted that he might miss the entire season because of his partially torn ACL. However, since his surgery in July, Kawhi has shown incredible progress towards his return.

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Just a few weeks ago, Jerry West gave an incredible update about Kawhi Leonard and his accelerated rate of recovery and rehabilitation.

Feb 28, 2021; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) goes to the basket between LA Clippers center Serge Ibaka (9) and forward Kawhi Leonard (2) in the third quarter at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles is heavily anticipating the return of its veteran, especially since the Clippers are playing without Paul George as well who was arguably having an MVP caliber season. So the Clippers need the backbone of their championship ambitions, i.e George and Leonard, back on the floor.

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Do you think Kawhi will make an early return this season? Are we hoping to see him on the court earlier than next season? Let us know what you think about it.

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Chaitanya Dadhwal

506 articles

Chaitanya Dadhwal is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Even though his journalism is driven by his desire to understand both sides of an argument and give a neutral perspective, he is biased towards Houston Rockets and Arsenal, and he has shown exactly how loyal he can be through tough times. Currently a Law student at Jindal Global Law School, he aims to have his own sports management firm one day and enjoys rap music during his time off.

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