Kiki Vandeweghe's China Trip, Day 5
OCT 12, 2012 2:28p ET
Paul was not expected to play until the Clippers returned to Los Angeles on Wednesday, at the earliest. He has been practicing with the team and is now expected to play 20 minutes on the last day of the Clippers' trip to China.
Paul had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb on Aug. 21.
Without CP3 on the floor, the Clippers have suffered in the turnover department in their first two preseason games, both losses. Their play has been spirited but sloppy in averaging 24.5 turnovers per game. Paul, who is one of the best floor generals in the game, is a true superstar in every sense of the word and a game-changer since the day he put on a Clipper uniform.
Even in limited minutes, it will be great to see him back on the floor.
Practice was canceled Friday because of the early morning arrival from Beijing. This did not let the Clipper players off the hook as head coach Vinny Del Negro made sure they had a long film session that left all of them eager to get back on the floor Sunday against the Heat.
This is a very cohesive and confident group and with their leader Paul back with them, expect a much different result on Sunday.
Friday evening the NBA hosted another welcome reception in Shanghai. It was another very successful and well-attended event. I was able to speak with LeBron James and even he was surprised at the fan support and enthusiasm that the Chinese people have for NBA basketball. James also has a healthy respect for Paul and Blake Griffin and knows that the Clippers will be a very tough opponent this year.
After the reception, many of the players went over to a party celebrating the launch of Dwyane Wade's new headphone line.
The Clippers will have a closed practice Saturday morning followed by an open practice for the fans and media.
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