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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Clippers' Jamal Crawford unlikely to return until the playoffs


By on 4/10/2014 07:00:00 AM

The Los Angeles Clippers lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder by the score of 107-101. The loss dropped the Clippers to 55-24, first in the Pacific Division and third in the Western Conference. The Clippers played without the presence of guard Jamal Crawford, who has missed the last five games due to a calf injury. It appears that the Clippers will have to do without Crawford until the start of the playoffs.

 Keith Allison via Wikimedia Commons

As reported by Robert Morales of the Los Angeles Daily News, Clippers coach Doc Rivers doesn't like that Crawford will not play again until the playoffs.  Missing a large number of games at the end of the season and expecting him to be ready and produce at full capacity in the playoffs is very difficult. Prior to missing the last five games, Crawford played in five, but missed eight of the previous nine before then.

Rivers believes that Crawford will still be voted Sixth Man of the Year despite his missed time. He also said he'd rather have Darren Collison come off the bench with Crawford in the playoffs, for a potent one-two combination. But with J.J. Redick having played in less than half the games this season, Collison may have to start should Redick miss any games. Reggie Bullock, who is averaging just 2.9 points per game this season, may also see additional time over the last few games of the season

Crawford was the eighth overall pick in the 2000 NBA draft.  The veteran has played for the Bulls, Knicks, Warriors, Hawks, Trail Blazers and Clippers.  In 66 games this season, Crawford is averaging 18.6 points, 3.2 assists and 2.3 rebounds per game.  Crawford has a career scoring average of 15.6 points in 954 games. 

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