Kawhi Leonard is a very rare type of player in the NBA. He's never too high, never too low, and always seems to be calm and composed. Part of his ability to perform in the playoffs is because of that mentality - staying in the moment.
"Just because you played great in 9 Game 7's doesn't mean you're gonna play great in Game 10 and vice versa," Leonard said. "Sometimes when you're overconfident you play bad, when you're down on yourself, you play good. For me, it's about focusing on that moment."
With his back against the wall, Kawhi Leonard completely carried the Clippers. In two elimination games, Leonard averaged: 36.5 PPG, 8 RPG, 6 APG, 3 SPG, on 70% shooting.
The Clippers had so many moments to crumble against the Dallas Mavericks but never did. Perhaps the biggest moment was when they were down 19 points on the road after already being down 0-2 from losing at home.
"I'm glad that we showed character and we showed poise going down 2-0 going on the road, and that Game 3, that meant a lot to me this season," Leonard said. "Obviously it got us to this next round, but like I said, it's all about this year. Now we've got to see what we can do this year to higher our chances of winning this next round."
Kawhi Leonard and the Clippers are using this tough Dallas Mavericks playoff series as motivation for their upcoming series with the Utah Jazz. They dug themselves out of numerous holes, rose above, and are now in the Conference Semifinals.
"You just know to keep faith," Leonard said. "You know what you have gone through at times when we are at our worst and you could, you know, just propel from that, dig yourself out of a hole that you put yourself in. You know, it just gives you that confidence, I believe. But that being said, this is one series and we have to focus on the next one."
Game 1 between the LA Clippers and Utah Jazz is on Tuesday.