After a long wait, Kawhi Leonard finally made it back to the hardcourt but he and the San Antonio Spurs could not stop the Mavericks on Tuesday night in Dallas.
However, Leonard made an impressive comeback from his absence in the first 27 games of the season with his 15-minute performance of 13 points and six rebounds.
It was a close fight but Leonard exited early in the third quarter after helping the Spurs into a 55-50 lead.
The Mavericks came back into the game and won 95-89.
The defeat made San Antonio drop to 19-9, while the Mavericks improved to 8-20 for the season.
It was Leonard’s first game since he suffered a right quad injury that forced him out of previous season’s Western Conference finals.
He last played May 14, 2017 in a Spurs loss to the Warriors.
Leonard was among the top 3 finalists for the NBA 2017 MVP award, together with James Harden and Russell Westbrook.