After last night’s win against the Utah Jazz, it was no secret that The Los Angeles Clippers needed to lean on Kawhi Leonard in order to come up on top. The Klaw came in clutch for his team and after six games is averaging 29.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, 5.7 assists and 2.3 steals this season. He has rightfully earned some praise and some analysts such as, Skip Bayless and Max Kellerman even say he is, “the best player on the planet.”
Skip Bayless’ Comments
Kawhi Leonard sat out during Wednesday night’s loss against the Utah Jazz due to load management, knee. He came back hot in Thursday night’s game against his former team, San Antonio Spurs. Leonard racked up 38 points, 12 rebounds and 4 steals. After such an incredible performance, The Klaw won back sports analyst, Skip Bayless, who claimed on his talk show, Skip and Shannon: Undisputed, that the two time Finals MVP was the “best player on the planet.”
Bayless made these comments while decked out in Kawhi Leonard gear. He wore a Kawhi Leonard Clippers jersey and wore Leonard’s new New Balance footwear. Bayless, being a Spurs fan, turned his back on The Klaw when he left the team for The L.A Clippers. Bayless said during his talk show, “I’m seeing a new Kawhi Leonard. I see a new guy. I see different body language. I see a guy who is in complete control of himself and the game.”
Max Kellerman’s Comments
Skip Bayless wasn’t the only sports analyst to make such extreme claims. Max Kellerman, Co-Host for ESPN’s talk show First Take, also said the three-time All Star was the “best player in the world.”
These comments were made when Kawhi Leonard was with the Toronto Raptors. They came after The Raptors defeated the Milwaukee Bucks in the Eastern Conference Finals. Kellerman said that, “Kawhi went bananas when it mattered most.” He continued to say, “so what does that make you? The best player on earth.”
Kawhi Leonard’s Performance
The two time Finals MVP has consistently put up big numbers which have led the Clippers to victories. He has also taken the Spurs to the NBA finals and has led the Toronto Raptors to their first NBA Finals appearance.
This season, The Clippers struggled to beat the Utah Jazz in Wednesday night’s game when they didn’t have Kawhi. They were able to defeat the team with Leonard back in the game on Sunday night’s rematch. They came up on top in a tough win, 105-94. Leonard came out tenaciously at the end of the game, scoring 18 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter. The “best player on earth” had a few words to say regarding his strategy:
According to analysts, performing and carrying your team when it matters most is what it takes to be the best player on the planet. Kawhi has done this several times and last night he proved that his team can rely on him to attack the basket and put up big numbers when it is needed most. After last night, Kawhi Leonard recorded his fourth 30-point game of the season.