Popovich unsure when Leonard’s ‘group’ will OK him to play

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich told reporters Sunday that first-team All-NBA forward Kawhi Leonard is continuing the rehabilitation of his injured right quadriceps in New York with his own team of doctors.

However, the San Antonio coach remains unsure when the standout forward and “his group” will give Leonard the OK to play.

“I don’t know when he’s going to feel, he and his group are going to feel like they’re ready to go,” Popovich said before a game against visiting Houston. “If I knew, he’d be here. When he and his group feel he’s ready, he’ll be ready.”

Leonard has played only nine games this season while nursing right quadriceps tendinopathy, an injury that flared up late in the offseason. He came back the team’s lineup briefly, but has not played since complaining of soreness after the Spurs’ home victory over Denver on Jan. 13.

The 6-foot-7 Leonard, a former NBA Defensive Player of the Year, still hopies to return to the Spurs during the regular season, though with only five games remaining following Sunday’s clash with the Rockets, chances are dwindling by the day.

“He’s trying to get well,” Popovich said. “Of course, that’s the purpose [of his stay in New York], to get well, that’s what he’s doing. That’s what rehab is. He’s up there going to Broadway shows and everything?”