INJURIES MOUNTING FOR CLIPPERS
CLEVELAND – Already faced with the challenge of seven games away from home without Matt Barnes and J.J. Redick, the road-weary Clippers sustained two more injuries in Saturday night’s 88-82 loss to the Cavaliers.
Within two minutes of one another in the fourth quarter, rookie Reggie Bullock (sprained left ankle) and DeAndre Jordan (strained right arch) left the game and did not return.
Bullock went down with 9:29 to go in the period after he leapt for a rebound and landed awkwardly as he attempted to avoid landing on a scrum of bodies on the floor.
“I tried to go to the boards to get a rebound and tried to avoid stepping on a player and just came down and landed and twisted my ankle,” said Bullock, who was helped to the locker room by Trainer Jasen Powell and injured guard Maalik Wayns. “I didn’t land on anybody’s foot. I just rolled my ankle as I came down.”
Jordan suffered the arch injury minutes later. After leaping several times in an attempt to bat out an offensive rebound, he landed and immediately reached towards his foot. As the Cavaliers retreated the other direction with the ball, Jordan limped up the floor behind the pack. He gave Head Coach Doc Rivers a thumb’s up, but was taken out of the game and got his foot re-taped in the locker room.
“I was going to put him back in but the way he walked to the table, he was limping, so I thought that wouldn’t be a good idea,” Rivers said of Jordan. “So, I think he’ll be fine in the short run.
“Reggie we’re not sure.”
Bullock, who said he has never suffered an ankle injury before, left Quicken Loans Arena in a walking boot. X-rays on his ankle came back negative. He will likely have a clearer of his timeline for return on Sunday. In the meantime, Rivers said the team may consider adding a player to the roster, which currently stands at 14, to help fill the void on the wing.
“We’re going to have to look somewhere,” Rivers said. “Let’s hope not, but my guess is yes. I don’t know where we’re going to go.
“I’ll be on the phone tonight and Gary [Sacks] and Gerald [Madkins] and Dave Wohl and all those guys. That’s their job. I’m praying that they know somebody. We’ll see.”
Bullock is averaging 10.5 minutes per game on the season, but has seen an uptick in playing time as the backup small forward since Barnes was lost to a torn retina on Nov. 18. Bullock scored a career-high 10 points in 19 minutes against Indiana on Dec. 1 and scored nine points in 21 minutes Thursday in Memphis.
Redick is expected to miss another 5-7 weeks after suffering a fractured right hand and torn ligament in his wrist on Nov. 29 at Sacramento. Wayns, who has yet to play this season after undergoing surgery to repair a torn meniscus in October, said he is getting closer to returning but is unsure when that will be.