Prized offseason acquisition Chris Paul is questionable game homestand.
Paul suffered the injury in the fourth quarter of Saturday's 102-94 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers, but the Clippers didn't miss a beat in winning their fifth game in six tries. Paul underwent an MRI over the weekend and the results were negative, and finished with 33 points and six assists against the Lakers. He is averaging 18.0 points and 8.4 assists in nine games this season.
"Chris Paul had a whale of a game," Lakers head coach Mike Brown said. "Tonight we didn't get it done."
Paul is averaging 30.0 points, 8.5 assists, 5.0 rebounds and 3.5 steals in his last two games. Blake Griffin added 22 points and 14 rebounds, while Chauncey Billups scored 19 points for the Clippers, who are 5-1 at home and will visit Utah after their homestand is completed. Caron Butler scored 13 points for LA and is two games shy of 600 in his career. Billups is 11 games short of 1,000.
New Jersey will wrap up a four-game road trip tonight at Staples Center and is 1-2 on the trek following Saturday's 107-94 loss at the Jazz. Deron Williams made his return to Salt Lake City and finished with 16 points. Williams was dealt to New Jersey last season and received a mix of boos and cheers.
"I expected it," he said.
Kris Humphries had 18 points and 10 rebounds for the Nets, who have lost four of five games and will begin a three-game homestand versus the Warriors, Thunder and Bobcats later this week. Humphries is averaging 13.7 points and team-high 10.0 rebounds in 11 starts this season.
New Jersey swept a home-and-home series with the Clippers a year ago and has won the last three meetings. The Nets halted a six-game road losing streak in this series with a 110-96 victory on Nov. 15, 2010.