The Clippers go to the Warmth in a matchup of short-handed groups

“Depleted” is a phrase that applies to each Miami hood and the go to Los Angeles Clippers goes into their match on Thursday night time.

The Clippers, who misplaced to the Atlanta Hawks 108-99 on Tuesday, have been with out their two largest stars, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, resulting from well being and security protocols. As well as, Clippers guard Patrick Beverley missed the sport resulting from soreness in his proper knee.

Miami, which misplaced 109-82 in opposition to the visiting Denver Nuggets on Wednesday night time, additionally performed brief. Warmth have been with out three key gamers: Jimmy Butler (COVID-19 protocol), Tyler Herro (neck) and Goran Dragic (groin).

Butler, a five-time All-Star, has missed 9 straight video games however was on the sidelines on Wednesday and is approaching a comeback. Wednesday was the primary time in additional than two weeks that he was allowed to affix the staff.

“It was nice to see everybody,” Warmth coach Erik Spoelstra stated in a query about Butler’s presence, “even when not everybody was obtainable.”

Herro, Miami’s second main scorer, was a choice in match time on Wednesday and will probably return on Thursday.

Dragic missed his third sport of the season and joined Meyers Leonard (shaft) on broken checklist. Leonard has began two of the three video games he has performed this season.

The excellent news for Miami, nonetheless, was that Avery Bradley (COVID-19 protocol) returned for his first act since January ninth. He scored eight factors and scored 3 of 6 photographs, together with 2 of 4 from 3-point intervals.

“Regardless that we got here brief,” Bradley stated, “it felt nice to be again on the market.”

The sport with the Clippers is the second of six straight dwelling video games for Miami. Warmth have misplaced a complete of 4 in a row.

Los Angeles’ defeat to Atlanta marked the start of a six-game highway journey.

“It is robust,” stated Clippers middle Ivica Zubac in regards to the staff enjoying brief. “It is simply how this yr will go for everybody. We aren’t the exception.

“Now we have been fortunate to have everybody obtainable (earlier than Tuesday). Now we have to regulate.”

The Clippers obtain spectacular manufacturing from Kawhi Leonard, who averages staff highlights in factors (25.9 per sport), assists (5.7) and steals (2.0). George is second in factors (23.9), returns (6.2) and assists (5.4). Nobody else on the staff has a mean of greater than 12.4 factors, which leaves the Clippers very … properly, impoverished.

“Hopefully they will come again and be part of the staff quickly,” Clippers coach Tyronn Lue stated of the lacking stars.

In the meantime, the Clippers will look to gamers like Terance Mann, Reggie Jackson and Luke Kennard.

Mann, a second spherical 2019, made his seventh profession begin and his first season on Tuesday. He scored 10 factors on 4-on-8 taking pictures, together with 1-on-3 on 3-point makes an attempt, and took 9 rebounds.

Jackson had staff heights in factors (20) and assists (eight). The veteran guard is a confirmed scorer and the Clippers will doubtless depend on him in opposition to the Warmth.

Kennard, the previous Duke star who was Detroit’s first-round choose (twelfth general) in 2017, averaged a career-high 15.8 factors final season. He scored 13 factors on Tuesday in his fourth begin of the season.

– Discipline degree media

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