Video: Kawhi Leonard Responds to Rumors of Clippers' Chemistry Issues

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJanuary 25, 2020

MIAMI, FLORIDA - JANUARY 24:  Kawhi Leonard #2 of the LA Clippers reacts against the Miami Heat during the first half at American Airlines Arena on January 24, 2020 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Los Angeles Clippers superstar forward Kawhi Leonard downplayed rumors about the team's potential chemistry issues following a 122-117 road victory over the Miami Heat on Friday night.

Leonard discussed the topic in a postgame interview with ESPN's Ariel Helwani:

Jovan Buha and Sam Amick of The Athletic reported Thursday that some Clippers players were struggling with the team's "preferential treatment" of Leonard and Paul George, who were acquired in the offseason to transform L.A. into a top-tier championship contender.

In early January, forward Montrezl Harrell voiced frustration about the team's lack of consistency following a blowout loss to the Memphis Grizzlies:

Those comments "confirmed the discomfort some felt" as tension built in the locker room, per Buha and Amick.

"Everything he does is out of his passion for winning," a source told The Athletic about Harrell. "He kind of walks to his own beat a little bit, but it's not from a selfish perspective at all."

The Clippers have mostly righted the ship since his pointed remarks, though. They've won seven of nine games since that loss to the Grizzlies, and they handed the Heat just their second home loss of the 2019-20 campaign Friday.

Leonard in particular has been in top form with George sidelined by a hamstring injury. He's led the Clips in scoring seven times in their past eight outings, including with 33 points against Miami. (He didn't play Thursday when Harrell led the team with 30 points in a loss to the Atlanta Hawks.)

Winning tends to make problems fade, and that'll probably be the case with the Clippers.

They return to action Sunday at the Orlando Magic—the fifth stop on a six-game road trip. They visit the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday.

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