Kawhi 'ready to go' as Clippers hold steady on minutes cap
"Right now, Kawhi just can't play a full quarter, so he can't play the whole 12-minute stint," Lue told ESPN's Ohm Youngmisuk following Thursday's 118-94 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.
Leonard has been under a minutes restriction in three games since returning from a foot injury. Against the Lakers, the five-time All-Star posted 15 points, eight rebounds, and six assists in 30 minutes.
"I feel good," Leonard said following Thursday's contest. "I'm ready to go. You know I'm just happy to be on the floor and not sitting on the sidelines, be able to play the game I love."
Lue has been forced to alter rotations with Leonard and teammate Paul George both sitting for spells during recent games.
"Without having him, it kind of messes up our rotations a little bit," Lue conceded. "So that is where we insert Terance Mann or Luke Kennard in that position and just kind of go from there.
"But once (Leonard) is cleared to be able to play the whole quarter, we will go back to him finishing the first and third and letting PG play with the second unit to start the quarter."
The 45-22 Clippers currently sit third in the Western Conference and are looking at a top-six finish, steering clear of the play-in round set to be contested by teams finishing seventh through 10th.