2022 NBA Play-In Tournament

Clippers' Paul George (Health and Safety Protocols) misses Play-In defeat

The Clippers' star swingman, Paul George, did not play in Friday's Play-In Tournament loss to the Pelicans.

Clippers' Paul George will miss the Play-In game against the Pelicans due to Health and Safety Protocols.

Paul George entered the NBA’s Health and Safety Protocols and missed the LA Clippers’ Play-In loss to New Orleans on Friday night at Crypto.com Arena.

The defeat eliminated the Clippers from earning the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

“We feel really bad for Paul and hope for a speedy recovery,” Lawrence Frank, president of basketball operations, said in confirming George’s status for the win-or-go-home game.

Frank said George wasn’t feeling well Thursday and the team learned of his diagnosis Friday morning. The team didn’t specify what the diagnosis was.

George’s absence was a huge blow to the Clippers’ hopes of making the playoffs. Without him, they were unable to earn the No. 8 seed and a first-round matchup with the NBA-leading Phoenix Suns.

George scored 34 points in a 109-104 loss at Minnesota on Tuesday in the first play-in game. That defeat cost the Clippers the No. 7 seed and a first-round matchup with Memphis.

The Clippers were 22-25 without George in the lineup this season.

He returned late last month after missing 43 games with a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. In his first game, he rallied the Clippers from a 25-point deficit to beat Utah 121-115.

Besides George, the Clippers were already without Kawhi Leonard, who hasn’t played all season while rehabbing from an ACL tear.

“He continues to progress with his rehab, but there’s still no timetable for his return,” Frank said.

The team recently got Norman Powell back and he teamed with George to help the Clippers win their last five regular-season games. Powell missed two months with a broken bone in his left foot.

Despite the absence of Leonard and multiple injuries, the Clippers finished 42-40.