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BEIJING–Clippers guard Chris Paul was cleared for full-contact participation before Tuesday morning’s practice at MasterCard Center.
“Chris practiced today pretty much the whole practice that obviously changes things when he’s out there,”
Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro said. "He played well. He’s just got to get in better game condition. He’s been out for a while, but there’s no question he’s a factor when he’s out there no matter what kind of shape he’s in.”
Paul has been sidelined since August after undergoing surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb. Although he has gradually taken part in team workouts over the last two weeks, he has been limited to walkthroughs and non-contact situations.
“It felt great [to practice]," Paul said. "I actually felt like I was part of the team. I was a little winded out there, but it felt good to get back out there and get in the mix.
“I felt fine because I haven’t done anything for so long. I’m pretty well rested, so I was excited to get out there and play.”
The Clippers are in China for two exhibition games against the defending champion Miami Heat. They play Thursday, Oct. 11 in Beijing and Sunday, Oct. 14 in Shanghai. Paul is not expected to play Thursday in Beijing.