Injury Report: Updates On Griffin, Barnes, Crawford

Rowan Kavner

LOS ANGELES – As the Clippers wrapped up a 3-1 road trip, Blake Griffin continued ramping up his workouts back home.

Griffin didn’t make the trip, but he continued building closer to a return, and head coach Doc Rivers said his star forward running, sweating and starting to shoot.

“He’s going full-tilt now and that’s good,” Rivers said. “I’m not even sure what that means not being there, but I know he’s working out and that’s all you can hope for right now. So that’s a good sign.”

Griffin last played Feb. 6 against the Raptors in Toronto. He continued on that road trip Feb. 8 to Oklahoma City but didn’t play in that game after finding out he had a staph infection in his elbow. Griffin returned home to Los Angeles to get surgery to remove the infection.

Rivers said he tries to stay out of injury reports and lets the medical staff take care of that side of things, but it sounds like Griffin is nearing a return.

Sunday will mark four weeks since Griffin’s been out. Rivers said, “I guess it’s possible,” when asked if Griffin could return for Sunday’s game at Golden State, though that seems unlikely this early in the week.

“This is one where the doctors would have to give him the OK to move forward,” Rivers said.

The good news is that Griffin’s return is nearing. Rivers doesn’t believe the Clippers, who’ve gone 7-3 since losing Griffin, will have any trouble reintegrating Griffin back into the lineup when he returns.

“I don’t think it will be very hard, but I haven’t given it a whole bunch of thought yet,” Rivers said.

Barnes Misses

If Monday night were a playoff game, Matt Barnes believes he could’ve given it a go.

But it was a regular season game, the last of a four-game road trip in which the Clippers had already started 2-1, and the team made an executive decision to keep him out of a Timberwolves game that still resulted in a win.

“It’s just something right now we want to play kind of cautious,” Barnes said. “I don’t want this to linger on, especially, you know, we’re in the home stretch of the season right now. We have kind of a spaced out schedule which is kind of rare for us right now.”

Barnes strained his hamstring the previous day in a win against the Bulls, but he continued to try to play through it in Chicago. He said he didn’t need an MRI afterward.

“We kind of have an understanding of what it is,” Barnes said. “No disrespect to the Timberwolves, but if this is the playoffs, I think I would play. But like I said, I think we have some time now to allow me to heal so the injury doesn’t linger.”

Barnes said once he ran around again in Chicago, he felt fine. But the starting and stopping gave him problems. He said he wants to play Wednesday against the Trail Blazers, but he has to get re-evaluated and see how he feels.

“Everybody could use a little rest right now,” Barnes said. “The reason I stayed in (Saturday), I just kind of felt I could still effectively help the team on the defensive end, not to mention we’re already down Blake. I tried to get through it (Sunday), but after talking to the coaching and our training staff, we thought it’d be best if I sat.”

Jordan Hamilton, who’s on a 10-day contract, ended up starting for Barnes and scoring 10 points.

“It was a lot of fun,” Hamilton said. “Being in the D-League for a minute, coming back up and getting some big minutes, I enjoyed it.”

Crawford Hurts Calf

The injury list got longer after Monday’s win against the Timberwolves, as Jamal Crawford missed the second half with a right calf contusion.

Crawford said it occurred around the 10-minute mark in the second quarter, and he hopes it’s nothing more than a bad Charley horse.

“I hope so,” Crawford said. “We’ll know more after the next couple days.”

Crawford has hurt his calf before, but it was his other calf and he said it doesn’t feel the same as the past injury.

For whatever it’s worth, Rivers said after the game the Clippers didn’t believe the injury to Crawford was particularly bad.

“But same reason I sat Matt out,” Rivers said. “When he said he had a calf contusion, I just said that’s it.”


JAMAL : - Hurt around 10-minute mark

“That’s big. Not having Blake, not having Matt, me leaving the game after halftime, J.J. leaving the game last couple minutes, we figured out a way. I think it’s a credit to the guys, Doc and the staff. We just grinded it out.”

“Early in the quarter, probably around the 10-minute mark of the second quarter.”

Charlie horse?

Had calf stuff before.