San Antonio Spurs: Is the dynasty 'over?'

3:57PlayHow would Kawhi Leonard's return help the Spurs

Leonard (quadriceps) hopes to return for Thursday's contest against New Orleans, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports.

Leonard, the former two-time Defensive Player of the Year, hasn't played a game since the Spurs' 12-80 victory over the Denver Nuggets on January 13.

Leonard has been riding a stationary bike and participating in three-on-three drills to simulate the physical contact of games, but has done so with staff members and "not my players". In the aftermath of the All-Star break, there was legitimate fears that Leonard, the 2014 NBA Finals MVP, would miss the remainder of the season.

Leonard's return would bring an end to a seemingly endless saga, and one highly unusual for the usually drama-free Spurs.

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Since the 1997 NBA Draft, the San Antonio Spurs' place close to, or at the top of the league, was an annual constant. The progress I've been making has been great.

How quickly Kawhi would be able to get back to playing 30 minutes a game and not have to take any games off besides the only back-to-back set the Spurs have left on their schedule (April 3 and 4 on the road against the Clippers and Lakers) is a mystery.

To say that Kawhi Leonard's season has not gone according to plan is definitely an understatement. If they miss the playoffs, it would press pause on a marvelous run through the late 1990's and into the 2000's, but there are things at play, too. I'm thankful for them, for the teammates that I have. "I'm just competing", he said in a post-game interview on ABC. "But I can't come back unhealthy", said Leonard.

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