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Leonard scores 20 in Team Chuck rout at Rising Stars Challenge

HOUSTON – San Antonio Spurs sophomore forward Kawhi Leonard made the most of his appearance in the BBVA Rising Stars Challenge on All-Star Friday Night.

Leonard, who was selected to the game last year, but had to sit out due to injury, started for Team Chuck and got rolling early on a dunk that woke up the crowd in a 163-135 rout of Team Shaq.

Leonard followed that up later in the first half with a pair of consecutive three-pointers that gave him 12 first-half points.

Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried, who paired with Leonard and Hornets rookie Anthony Davis on the Tea Chuck frontcourt, came away from the game impressed with his teammate for the night.

"That (frontcourt pairing) was nice. Kawhi has big hands. Long arms and big hands," Faried said. "He plays great D. He can shoot it, actually and a heck of a player."

Leonard finished the game with 20 points, seven rebounds and three assists in just over 20 minutes.

Spurs assistant coach Mike Budenholzer coach Kawhi and Team Chuck said he enjoyed coaching Leonard outside of the day-to-day Spurs games.

"I think we were all just happy for his growth and how well he's been playing and the honor to be in this game," Budenholzer said. "It was just great to be a part of it with Kawhi."

For more on tonight's game, be sure to visit Project Spurs' All-Star Central for photos and video from tonight's game.

About Michael A. De Leon

Michael founded Project Spurs in 2004. He started The Spurscast, the first Spurs podcast on the Internet, in 2005. Michael has been interviewed by the BBC, SportTalk, the Sports Reporters Radio Show, MemphisSportLive, OKC Sports Wrap and ESPN radio among others. He is a credentialed member of the media for the San Antonio Spurs and Austin Toros. He is also the founder of Project Spurs' sister sites, Toros Nation and Stars Hoops.

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