Chris Haynes of Yahoo! Sports had a significant update on Thursday night regarding the injury rehab of Los Angeles Clippers superstar Kawhi Leonard.

During the Clippers’ game against the Phoenix Suns, Haynes reported on TNT that Leonard is “ahead of schedule” in his rehab from a torn ACL, and there’s “a strong possibility” Leonard returns to play for Los Angeles this season.

Leonard, 30, suffered a torn ACL in the Clippers’ Western Conference Semifinals series against the Utah Jazz last June. , and underwent surgery last July.

The Clippers would gladly take any help they could get from the two-time NBA Finals MVP this season. Los Angeles is 19-20 after Thursday night’s 106-89 loss, placing eighth in the Western Conference.

After the loss, the Los Angeles coaching staff and players were asked about the Leonard report.

Clippers head coach Tyronn Lue told the media,  “Nothing I can speak to.”

On a follow-up question that asked about Leonard’s optimism to return this season, Lue responded, “Yeah, there’s optimism. But I still don’t really know. I’d like to have a lot of guys back right now.”

Clippers forward Marcus Morris Jr. said that he would “tell Kawhi to take his time” with the rehab.

“When he’s ready to play, he’ll play. We’ll hold it down until he gets here,” Morris said.

The Clippers are also without star forward Paul George, who’s recovering from a torn ligament in his right elbow. If Los Angeles can hang in the playoff race and can get Leonard and George both back healthy at some point, they will be a very dangerous team.

About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at mclapp@thecomeback.com.