Clippers' Blake Griffin may not play Wednesday at Orlando

The starter, with a strained left hamstring, will be a game-time decision against the Magic.

February 06, 2013|By Broderick Turner
  • Blake Griffin will be a game-time decision for the Clippers when they visit Orlando because of a strained left hamstring.
Blake Griffin will be a game-time decision for the Clippers when they visit… (Chuck Myers / McClatchy…)

ORLANDO, Fla. — Another Clipper has been taken out by an injury, leaving the team to report that Blake Griffin will be a game-time decision Wednesday for its game in Orlando because of his strained left hamstring.

In theory, this should be another opportunity for a Clippers reserve to step into that void, but the team has become so depleted that a once-deep squad is not so deep anymore.

Griffin pulled out because of the injury just before Monday night's game against the Washington Wizards. So Griffin joined Chris Paul (bruised right kneecap) and Chauncey Billups (tendinitis, left foot) as cheerleaders from the bench, but the Clippers lost Monday for the seventh time in their last nine games.

And, oh, by the way, Jamal Crawford played 33 minutes Monday with a broken nose that he suffered in Friday night's loss against the Toronto Raptors.

"We just have to keep playing," DeAndre Jordan said. "We have guys out, but so does everybody else in the league. That's where we really find out how deep we are. Everybody has to step up a little bit more."

The Clippers were down to 10 healthy bodies against the Wizards and may have the same number of players available for Wednesday night's game against the Magic.

The Clippers are so banged up that there was no practice Tuesday.

And from watching Griffin limp around the locker room after Monday night's game, there was no indication that he would play soon.

"Right now, we need everybody to play well with the guys being out," Coach Vinny Del Negro said. "We're not getting that all the time.

"We've got to try to get some guys some minutes that maybe don't usually get as many. Hopefully that will make us stronger when we get three starters back."

Jordan, for one, stepped up his game against the Wizards, collecting a career-high 22 rebounds.

"He was all over the glass. DJ should be able to do that a lot," Del Negro said. "He's that athletic and more consistent. It doesn't surprise me. It was good to see his activity. He knew guys were down, and he stepped up for us."

On offense, the Clippers probably have to turn to Crawford to be even more productive.

Crawford already is second on the team in scoring (16.9 points per game) and may have to be the offensive catalyst until the Clippers get healthy again.

"I'm still looked at as one of the guys to make things happen," Crawford said. "So I know that, missing everybody, that I have to be even more aggressive.… If I can get going, it opens the floor for my other teammates."

Turnover prone

In losing their last three games on this trip, there has been one constant for the Clippers: turnovers.

They had 20 turnovers against the Wizards, eight in the fourth quarter. The Clippers had 21 turnovers against Boston and 15 against Toronto.

"Turnovers are going to happen," said Eric Bledsoe, who is averaging 3.3 turnovers in the three losses. "It's part of the game. It's just that you can't compound it. We turn the ball over and then not get back on defense."

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