UNC in the NBA: Resurgent Raymond Felton playing well for Clippers

Clippers backup point guard Raymond Felton playing good basketball in place of nine-time NBA All-Star Chris Paul

Since being promoted to the Los Angeles Clippers’ starting lineup, backup point guard Raymond Felton has played well in the absence of one of the NBA’s best guards.

Nine-time NBA All-Star Chris Paul sprained his left thumb in the second quarter of a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder on January 16th. Felton was subsequently inserted into the starting rotation, tasked with filling in for one of the league’s best floor generals.

Nov 12, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Los Angeles Clippers guard Raymond Felton (2) dribbles in the second quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Nov 12, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Los Angeles Clippers guard Raymond Felton (2) dribbles in the second quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Following the injury, Felton entered the game in place of Paul and proceeded to go 7-of-7 from the floor for 15 points. He also dished out six assists to just two turnovers in 27 minutes of play.

In the ten games since Felton took over the Clippers’ starting point guard position, he’s averaged 11.5 points, 4.4 assists, 4.3 rebounds and just 1.4 turnovers per game. He’s shooting 46 percent from the floor and 38 percent from three-point range during that span.

Of course, he hasn’t played to the level of Paul, but to say that he has played well would be an understatement.

There is no exact timetable for Paul’s return, but he’s expected to be back on the court in early March. And while the Clippers may struggle without Paul at the helm, Felton and company will enjoy the many opportunities that they will be afforded in the mean time.

Felton, now in his 12th professional season with his sixth team, is playing the best basketball that he’s played since his second stint with the New York Knicks in 2013.

After scoring seven points on Monday night, Felton passed the 10,000-point mark for his career. His 4,782 career assists rank 67th all-time in NBA history.

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