Clippers' Leonard sits out Celtics matchup with back spasms

Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard (2) drives between Memphis Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane (22) and center Xavier Tillman (2) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Friday, Feb. 26, 2021, in Memphis, Tenn. (Brandon Dill/AP)

BOSTON -- The Clippers say All-Star Kawhi Leonard is sitting out their matchup with the Celtics due to back spasms.

Leonard was listed in the starting lineup before the game, but never took the floor during warmups. The team announced late in the first quarter that he had been ruled out.

Leonard has missed seven previous games this season, including two for a mouth laceration, two while in the health and safety protocols and three for a bruised leg.

Leonard is the Clippers' leading scorer, averaging 26.8 points and 6.3 rebounds. Los Angeles is playing in the fourth game of a five-game road trip that ends Thursday at Washington.

The Celtics led 35-32 at the end of the first quarter.

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