Pelicans-Clippers Preview

For all of the hype surrounding "Lob City" and the bevy of highlights Chris Paul and Blake Griffin have produced since joining forces in Los Angeles, playoff success hasn’t been a byproduct.

The Clippers are taking aggressive measures to go deeper in the postseason this year.

Danny Granger is likely to make his debut for Los Angeles on Saturday night as it tries to beat the visiting New Orleans Pelicans for the second time this week.

The Clippers (40-20) have been one of the NBA’s top regular-season teams after acquiring Paul prior to the 2011-12 season, ranking fifth with a 136-72 record since. However, they were swept out of the conference semifinals by San Antonio in 2012 and eliminated in the first round by Memphis last year.

Los Angeles appears to be all in to advance further this season. The Clippers signed Granger on Friday, two days after his contract was bought out by Philadelphia following his trade from Indiana. They also added Glen Davis on Monday, further bolstering their bench.

Granger ranked ninth in the league in scoring from 2008-09 through 2010-11, averaging 23.3 points. But plagued by tendinitis in his right knee, he’s scored 7.9 per game over only 34 contests for the Pacers over the last two seasons.

"I definitely have gotten healthy," Granger, who is averaging 22.0 points over his last 11 matchups with New Orleans while shooting 47.8 percent from 3-point range, told the Clippers’ website. "Now it was just a matter of getting my game back and getting my feel and I was on track. I’m still feeling good. So, I still feel like I have a lot to offer and I like the way I’m going."

Granger joins Davis, who had two points and two rebounds over 5:14 in Wednesday’s 101-93 victory over the Rockets. Griffin finished with 23 points and 16 rebounds and has averaged 28.6 points during an 18-game streak of scoring 20 or more.

Los Angeles, which dealt Houston its second loss in 12 games, has won six of its last eight.

"It means a lot," said Darren Collison, who tallied seven of his 19 points in the final 2:09. "We know Houston’s guys are relatively new to each other, but they have been playing well as of late. So this speaks volumes for us."

Second-leading scorer Jamal Crawford (19.0 ppg) left in the first half with a strained left calf and will be sidelined until next week.

New Orleans (23-35) has experienced worse luck with injury, announcing Friday that Jrue Holiday would miss the remainder of the season after undergoing surgery for a stress fracture in his right tibia. The Pelicans are 8-16 since losing Holiday, who averaged 14.3 points and a team-best 7.9 assists through 34 contests.

They’re currently stuck in a six-game skid, which included a 123-110 home loss to Los Angeles on Monday. It was also the Pelicans’ fifth straight defeat to the Clippers, who got seven 3-pointers from Crawford and 16 overall in the win.

New Orleans lost 116-104 at Phoenix on Friday despite a career high-tying 32 points from Anthony Davis. The second-year center was a game-time decision due to a sore left shoulder he sprained in Wednesday’s loss at Dallas.

"We just couldn’t get the stops, we just couldn’t get the ball," coach Monty Williams said after his team yielded 40 points to Phoenix’s Goran Dragic. "Dragic was in our paint all night long. He’s a really good player, but we could have done a better job."

Davis averaged 25.0 points and 11.5 rebounds in the first two meetings with the Clippers this season.

Paul is averaging 10.0 assists and 3.2 steals over nine career matchups with his former club.