Chris Paul has been playing with a strained right hip flexor sustained in… (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles…)
SAN ANTONIO – So much of the talk at the Clippers’ shoot-around Tuesday was about the health issues of their players and how effective they could be against the San Antonio Spurs in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals tonight.
Blake Griffin (sprained left knee), Chris Paul (strained right hip flexor), Caron Butler (fractured left hand) and Mo Williams (sore right hand) all said there was no way they would miss the game.
They had Sunday night and all day Monday to get rest and treatment on their injuries.
“These past two days have been good,” Griffin said. “Also, this series might be better for it. It’s not as much loading and holding people off [like in the Memphis series]. That’s really what gets you. It’s not so much jumping on my own.”
Still, Clippers Coach Vinny Del Negro said he’ll watch Griffin closely to make sure his All-Star power forward has better movement than he showed in Game 7 against the Grizzlies.
Griffin couldn’t explode like he wanted to and didn’t play much in the fourth quarter at Memphis on Sunday.
“He said he felt better,” Del Negro said. “He got some therapy and rest yesterday. We’ll get him out there and see how he does. But if he’s slowed at all.... We have to monitor his minutes and Chris’ minutes. They’ll be ready, though.”
Paul, when asked how he was feeling, pretty much gave the same answer he has given since he was injured in Game 6 against Memphis:
“As well as you can right now,” he said, smiling. “We’ll be ready to go tonight, though.”
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