Brandon Ingram dribbles against Miles Bridges

Brandon Ingram a game-time decision for Clippers game, Lonzo Ball out

by Jim Eichenhofer
@Jim_Eichenhofer

It’s only the fourth week of the NBA regular season, yet injury news continues to dominate much of the discussion around the league. Case in point, Thursday’s Clippers-Pelicans matchup (7 p.m., Fox Sports New Orleans, ESPN Radio New Orleans 100.3 FM), which features question marks related to prominent players on both rosters.

For New Orleans, forward Brandon Ingram (right knee soreness) has been a game-time decision, with fifth-year head coach Alvin Gentry saying, “There is a possibility he could play, but it’s one of those deals where we won’t know until he shows up (for his Thursday pregame warmup), works out and sees where he is.”

While Ingram’s status is uncertain, his three-year NBA teammate, point guard Lonzo Ball, has already been ruled out of Thursday’s game, with Gentry confirming after Wednesday’s practice that Ball will miss his third consecutive game due to a right adductor strain.

Like in Ingram’s case, the status of two LA Clippers perennial All-Stars is also seemingly up in the air. Kawhi Leonard has not been playing in back-to-back games early in 2019-20, so whether he plays Thursday seemingly will be dependent on whether he suits up for Wednesday’s game at Houston. Meanwhile, it was reported by various outlets that Paul George will make his season debut either Wednesday or Thursday, but it is unclear whether George will initially also be held out of back-to-backs.

For the Pelicans, Ingram had played in the first nine games of the season, but he said Wednesday that he hyperextended his knee late in Saturday’s win over Charlotte. He felt discomfort when he was working out on the court in the Smoothie King Center prior to Monday’s loss to Houston and eventually made the decision not to play.

“He was all set to play, but didn’t feel that comfortable about it,” Gentry said of Ingram. “We always told him to take the high road (in decision-making related to injuries). We’ll be cautious with what’s going on.”

“I feel good; I’m just continuing to listen to the trainers and the doctors, trying to come in and see how I feel each and every day,” said Ingram, who did not practice Wednesday. “Hopefully tomorrow at shootaround (it will allow him to play against the Clippers). It’s nothing big, nothing major, but I’m just taking it day by day. Hopefully it can continue to progress.”

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