The weight of the Clippers’ postseason success rests on Kawhi Leonard

For once, the Los Angeles Clippers weren’t on the gagging side of a choke job. Beating the Dallas Mavericks in a thrilling seven-game matchup doesn’t exorcise demons, erase the recent or long ago past or quiet the second-guessing of setting themselves up with a matchup against Luka Doncic.

All it does is clinch a berth against the rested Utah Jazz, as +135 underdogs at BetMGM, in 48 hours in Salt Lake City — and further cement the belief there’s no reason they shouldn’t come out of the West to at least make the NBA Finals, if not win the whole damn thing.

The deepest team in the league showed why only the name “Clippers” has stopped them from being a consensus pick to go to a land they’ve never been before — a form of failure-induced PTSD.

The character of all the main characters came into question when this dizzying series began, accomplished men like Kawhi Leonard and Ty Lue, before Leonard said “enough of the nonsense” and put his game into overdrive.

It doesn’t clear Lue from hunting the matchup with Doncic or master tactician Rick Carlisle, because it almost spelled doom. It seemed as if the lone strategy was, “Let Luka make all the plays for 36 minutes, then we’ll pray he gets tired out in the fourth” — which turned out to be the best course of action given the result.