The blood streamed out of Kawhi Leonard’s mouth. The Los Angeles Clippers’ star then stayed motionless on the floor for a few moments.
Leonard then missed the final 6:07 of the Clippers’ 121-108 win over the Denver Nuggets on Christmas evening. Afterwards, Leonard received eight stitches to treat a mouth laceration. Still, Clippers coach Tyronn Lue did not sound concerned.
"He’s going to be fine," Lue said. "He got up and walked off the floor. So he’s good."
Leonard did not appear "good" when Clippers teammate Serge Ibaka accidentally struck his jaw with an elbow following a rebound. Leonard immediately fell to the floor. Soon, blood gushed out of his mouth. Eventually, Leonard walked off the court and to the locker room on his own accompanied by trainers.
Leonard and Ibaka did not speak to reporters after the game. But Clippers forward Nicolas Batum sensed that Leonard "was okay" after seeing him in the locker room. Yet, Batum admitted "it was kind of scary at the moment."
"When I went closer to him, I saw his lips. It didn’t look good at all," Batum said. "You don’t want one of your teammates or any players like that have to blood all over him and everywhere on the floor. But I think he’s good."