NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, November 29th
(All times Eastern)
Los Angeles Clippers (11-5) at Sacramento Kings (4-9), 10 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - Chris Paul, the NBA's assist leader with 12.2 per game,
hopes to shake off a strained right hamstring Friday when he leads the Los
Angeles Clippers into Sacramento for a showdown with the Kings.
Paul suffered the injury in Wednesday's 93-80 victory over the New York Knicks
and ended with 15 points and seven assists. Clippers head coach Doc Rivers
hopes his floor general is healthy enough to play.
"We obviously need Chris," Rivers said. "He's extremely important to us, but
if he can't go I'm not going to push him."
Darren Collison will most likely run the point if Paul is unable to go.
Blake Griffin registered 15 points and 13 rebounds, JJ Redick tallied 15
points and DeAndre Jordan grabbed 13 boards for the Clippers, who have won
three in a row and eight of 10 games.
"We'll take the win, but there are things we have to work on," Griffin said.
"We held them to a pretty decent percentage."
Griffin is 12 points shy of 5,000 for his career for Los Angeles, which is
second in the NBA with 107.0 points per game and is scheduled to play eight of
the next nine games away from home. L.A. is 3-4 as the guest.
Sacramento will begin a four-game homestand Friday versus the Clippers, Golden
State. Oklahoma City and the Lakers, and went 1-2 on a recent road trip, which
included a 103-102 loss at the Clippers.
But in Sunday's 100-86 loss at the Lakers, Greivis Vasquez scored 13 of his
team-high 20 points in the first quarter, DeMarcus Cousins had 17, eight
rebounds and seven assists and Ben McLemore netted 15 in a losing effort.
The Kings trailed 73-61 heading into the fourth quarter and cut the deficit to
nine before the Lakers grabbed a double-digit advantage.
Sacramento has lost two straight and four of six games, and could see the
debut of forward Derrick Williams Friday. Williams was acquired from the
Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for forward Luc Mbah a Moute on Tuesday.
"We're excited to acquire a player with Derrick's skillset," said Kings GM
Pete D'Alessandro. "He will add size, length and serve as a scoring threat in
our frontcourt. We also want to thank Luc for his contributions during the
short time he was a King. We wish him the best."
Los Angeles has defeated Sacramento twice already this season and is 11-2 in
the previous 13 meetings between the Pacific foes. The Clippers, though, have
lost 24 of 31 games in California's capital.
Clippers reserve Jamal Crawford has scored 17 or more points in four of his
six games against Sacramento since joining the team.
11/29 10:42:12 ET