SAN ANTONIO -- Spurs players reacted Friday to ESPN's report from a day before about the club holding a players-only meeting to ascertain star forward Kawhi Leonard's possible return to the lineup, with Danny Green calling the report "false" and Tony Parker declining to discuss specifics.
"The meeting, it wasn't just about him," said Green, one of Leonard's closest friends on the team. "[It was] a meeting for the team. Nobody was frustrated or took anything the wrong way. We were communicating like adults. We don't have personalities in our locker room to be coming at each other. We're not an emotional team. So in the locker room, we don't get emotional either. We just talk like adults."
The Spurs held the players-only meeting after their Saturday win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, with Parker, a four-time NBA champion, quarterbacking the affair. Non-players were asked to leave the locker room, according to sources.
The conversation was described as tense, with several teammates expressing frustration and confusion over a growing divide that has created significant tension between Leonard and the Spurs. Outside the locker room, players' voices could be heard through the door, sources said.
Parker declined to discuss specifics about the meeting.
"You should know better that I can't talk about that," Parker said. "That's private stuff, locker room stuff. We always talk as a team, and you know we can't talk about that."
The Spurs concluded the meeting without any clarity on when Leonard would return to the lineup, as the forward insisted that he has good reason to continue sitting out because he still isn't fully healthy, sources said. Leonard told teammates he planned to return once he felt healthy enough to do so, sources said.
A two-time Defensive Player of the Year and first-team All-NBA player, as well as the 2014 Finals MVP, Leonard is eligible for a $200 million contract extension this summer and free agency in 2019. Leonard has impressed his coaches and teammates during 3-on-3 and 4-on-4 workouts, and there had been a belief his rehabilitation was cycling toward a return to the floor.
Leonard had targeted games in the past week, only to decide he wasn't ready to return, league sources said.
The Spurs have 10 games left in the regular season and sit at No. 6 in the Western Conference standings at 42-30. San Antonio has won five straight games.
In the aftermath of the team meeting, guard Manu Ginobili told reporters that the Spurs needed to proceed as though Leonard would not be returning.
"He is not coming back," Ginobili said Wednesday. "For me, he's not coming back, because it's not helping [to think Leonard is returning]. We fell for it a week ago again. I guess you guys made us fall for it. But we have to think that he's not coming back, that we are who we are, and that we got to fight without him. That shouldn't be changing, at least until he is ready for the jump ball."
Green relayed the same sentiment.
"It's been that since [after the] All-Star [break]," Green said. "[Gregg Popovich] has made that very clear after the break. That hasn't changed. Pop said if he does come back, it would be great to have him. But our mindset with 10 games left: We've got to make the best of it with the group that we have."
Leonard spent time with the Spurs briefly to take the annual team photo Wednesday but didn't attend shootaround in advance of the Wizards game.