Kawhi Leonard's camp has come to believe the issue has more to do with an ossification or hardening in the quadriceps area where the muscle has been repeatedly bruised and then an atrophying, which in turn affected the tendons connecting the muscle to the knee, according to multiple sources.
The Spurs' doctors were initially calling the shots for most of last summer in his workouts in San Antonio with team staffers and in San Diego with his longtime personal trainer.
Things changed in August as Leonard continued to experience discomfort.
Leonard's agent, Mitch Frankel, and uncle, Dennis Robertson, began pressing the Spurs to consult outside opinions. Last fall, Dr. Keith Pyne, the managing partner of SportsLab NYC, who is affiliated with the Washington Nationals and New York Islanders, began consulting on the case.
The frustration on the Spurs' end stems from losing control of the medical care of their franchise player, and the way in which the entire process has been handled by Leonard's representation, according to multiple sources.
Said one Spurs staffer, "It's out of our hands."
"Our focus for all of our players is to provide them with the very best in player care for their entire career," RC Buford told ESPN early Tuesday morning. "Throughout this process with Kawhi, our goal has been to give him the best care and support available no matter where that comes from."