The Toronto Raptors weren't able to come away with the win, but they were successful in making life difficult for Kawhi Leonard in Monday's matchup with the LA Clippers.
The Raptors limited the two-time Finals MVP to 12 points, marking his lowest scoring output of the season. He shot 2-for-11 from the field, including 0-for-4 from the 3-point line. Leonard still came close to a triple-double with 11 rebounds and nine assists, but he also committed a career-high nine turnovers.
After the game, Leonard told the media that the Raptors did "a great job" on him. However, he added that he was glad they defended him the way they did - doubling and trapping him - because it made him and his teammates better.
Kawhi said that the Raptors' defense/traps on him tonight were more aggressive than any of their coverages from last season.- Josh Lewenberg (@JLew1050) November 12, 2019
"They did a great job on me tonight, defending, sending extra bodies. But I'm glad they did. It got me better & its gonna get me teammates better as well"
Raptors guard Fred VanVleet said Toronto "definitely went in trying to take [Leonard] out of the game."
VanVleet on taking Kawhi out: "I mean he got the win so I don't know if we're into moral victories. But we definitely went in trying to take him out of the game. He got a lot of our focus, just making it tough on him, making him work and throwing 4 or 5 bodies at him."- Josh Lewenberg (@JLew1050) November 12, 2019
Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell benefited from the attention the Raptors were paying to Leonard, as they combined for 35 points. JaMychal Green also came up big off the bench for the Clippers with a double-double of 10 points and 12 rebounds.
The next matchup between the Raptors and Clippers will be on Dec. 11. It'll be Leonard's first game in Toronto since leaving the franchise for the Clippers in free agency.