Clippers Notes: Griffin, Rivers, Smith, Tskitishvili

Clippers forward Blake Griffin will be out of action for at least two weeks after suffering a partially torn left quadriceps, according to Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports. That means Griffin will miss at least six games before being re-evaluated two weeks from now. The team is hoping that rest and physical therapy will be enough to treat the injury, a source told Dan Woike of The Orange County Register (Twitter link). A source close to Griffin tells Ken Berger of CBS Sports that the Clippers are confident two to three weeks of that treatment will be sufficient for Griffin to recover (Twitter link). “Tough break,” said Clippers coach Doc Rivers“Blake was playing so well. We just have to keep pushing forward until his return.” The five-time All-Star is averaging 23.2 points and 8.7 rebounds through 30 games.

There’s more Clipper-related news out of Los Angeles:

  • Rivers is taking a calm approach to the team’s 17-13 start, Woike writes in a separate story. The Clippers are fourth in the Western Conference standings but have been disappointing against the league’s best clubs, compiling just a 5-11 record against teams that currently hold playoff spots. Still, the coach said immediate changes aren’t needed. “I’ve had some teams where I would be panicked now,” Rivers said. “I’d have some teams where I’d go to sleep right now, they’ll be fine. So I think it depends on your team. This is a team that is just a team in motion. We made a lot of changes. It takes time.”
  • The Christmas Day win over the Lakers marked the second straight game in which Josh Smith was left out of the rotation, Woike notes in the same article. Smith signed a veteran’s minimum deal with the Clippers in July, but he’s struggled to find a role with the team. He is averaging just 5.9 points and 14.6 minutes of playing time this season. Rivers gave Smith’s normal minutes to Cole Aldrich Friday night.
  • Nikoloz Tskitishvili, who spent part of training camp with the Clippers, will soon be joining Champville in Lebanon, tweets international journalist David Pick. Tskitishvili has spent parts of this season in China and Japan after L.A. waived him in early October.

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