The San Antonio Spurs signed veteran forward Rudy Gay to a two-year, $17.2 million deal in the last offseason to provide scoring punch off the bench. Despite being limited to just 57 games due to a slew of injuries, Gay emerged as a dependable scorer for the Spurs, averaging 11.5 points and 5.1 rebounds per game in 21.6 minutes of action per outing. Gay also became a valuable piece for the Spurs after superstar Kawhi Leonard was limited to just nine games because of a recurring quad issue.

In their first-round playoff series against the Golden State Warriors, Gay started in four of five playoff games, averaging 12.2 points, 5.6 boards and 2.2 assists in 32 minutes of action.

However, the Warriors were simply too much for the Spurs to overcome as they were eliminated in five games. In the offseason, Gay plans to ponder his return to the Spurs and exercise his player option worth $8.8 million or become a free agent. In an interview with Hoops Hype, Gay was asked about the Spurs’ situation with Leonard, whose relationship with the team soured after he was sidelined indefinitely due to the quad issue that has hounded him since the preseason.

Gay claims Leonard’s situation is blown out of proportion

According to Gay, the situation between the Spurs and Leonard may have been blown out of proportion. Gay said the Spurs were expected to contend for a title while the media read into everything that has been happening with the team: “I definitely think it was blown out of proportion,” said Gay.

The veteran forward added that he completely understands Leonard’s situation, adding that it’s tough being injured and sitting out while watching your teammates play. “I’ve done it! I’ve been there and had to sit out,” said Gay, adding that being healthy is rare in this business.

Gay in contact with Leonard

Gay also revealed that he has been in contact with Leonard during his rehab process, keeping him updated on the team’s development.

According to Gay, he talked and sent pictures to Leonard to make him feel better. He also advised Leonard to work hard so he can get healthy next season. “I hope he’s getting closer to that,” Gay said. There were reports that the Spurs plan to trade Leonard in the offseason as their relationship is beyond repair. Among the teams reportedly interested in Leonard are the New York Knicks, Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Clippers. Leonard reportedly wants to play for a team close to his hometown of Los Angeles. Leonard could also stay with the Spurs and sign a maximum contract extension worth $219 million.