Even though the Clippers lost 99-92 to Cleveland Wednesday night, the team got a small look at the boost they’re going to get from veteran forward Kenyon Martin.
Martin made his Clippers debut after signing with the team last Friday, playing 20 minutes and scoring six points to go with four rebounds and two blocks.
“(He is) amazing,” Clippers guard Chris Paul said. “The energy he brought on the offensive and defensive end is something that we are definitely going to need. I’m happy to have him.”
Martin came off the bench to start the second quarter and scored his first points on a baseline jumper. Still, he missed some other open looks. Despite playing in China, Martin said it’s going to take a little time to get into game shape.
“The only way to get in NBA shape is by playing in games,” Martin said. “You can do all the conditioning you want, but it’s a lot different when you’re bumping bodies, blocking out and things like that.”
Martin played with the starters in the third and fourth quarters and helped the Clippers tie the game in the fourth quarter.
He will play his second Clippers game when the team faces the 76ers on Friday.
–After losing to Cleveland Wednesday night, the Clippers knew a game they should have won got away. The team led by as many as nine points in the first quarter before the offense came up short. “We had no aggression tonight,” Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said. “We thought we were going to move the ball (easily) and make plays. (The Cavaliers) got some confidence and made a run in the second quarter. We were not tough enough tonight.” Usually when the offense breaks down, the Clippers turn to guard Chris Paul to create, but Wednesday Paul couldn’t get open looks to fall. Paul finished with 16 points on 5-of-16 shooting. “We came out flat. I couldn’t make a shot,” Paul said. “We didn’t defend well. This is definitely one of our worst showings.” –The Clippers have never won five straight games on the road since moving to Los Angeles in 1984. Wednesday’s loss to Cleveland broke a four-game road winning streak. QUOTE TO NOTE: “None whatsoever.” — Clippers guard Chris Paul on if the team could take any positives from a 99-92 loss to Cleveland Wednesday.
ROSTER REPORT PLAYER NOTES: –G Chris Paul made up for a poor shooting night (16 points, 5-of-16 from the field) by distributing the ball. Paul finished with 12 assists, the seventh time Paul’s had 10 or more assists this season. –G Mo Williams had his worst shooting night of the year, hitting just 2-of-10 from the field. In his last two games, Williams has made just 5-for-22 from the floor. –C DeAndre Jordan was held scoreless for the first time this season. Jordan didn’t attempt a field goal in 24 minutes Wednesday, but he did block two shots. –G Randy Foye started in place of Chauncey Billups, who was lost for the season Monday. Foye finished with 15 points and two assists in the Clippers’ loss to Cleveland. MEDICAL WATCH: –G Chauncey Billups (left Achilles tendon) had to leave Monday’s win at Orlando in the fourth quarter after crumbling to the ground while chasing a rebound. Billups is out for the remainder of the season. –G Eric Bledsoe (torn right meniscus) was active for the first time in five games, but he didn’t play. Bledsoe tweaked his surgically repaired knee playing three-on-three last week and is day-to-day. ROTATION: Starters: –Point guard Chris Paul –Shooting guard Randy Foye –Small forward Caron Butler –Power forward Blake Griffin –Center DeAndre Jordan Bench: –Guard Mo Williams –Forward Kenyon Martin –Forward Reggie Evans –Forward Ryan Gomes