PREVIEW: LA Clippers, winners of 5 of their last 6, take on 76ers (3:30p, Prime Ticket)
The Clippers (28-25) are 3-1 since trading star forward Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons on Jan. 29. They’ve won five of their last six including a 108-95 victory over the Pistons in Detroit on Friday, a game in which Lou Williams notched 26 points for Los Angeles.
Griffin countered with 19, albeit on 7-of-19 shooting, while two of the players the Clippers acquired for him, Tobias Harris and Avery Bradley, finished with 12 and 10, respectively.
Harris told reporters afterward that facing his old team was “like seeing your ex-girlfriend for the first time, with her new man. You’ve got a new girl.”
“A lot,” Harris added, “was put into, obviously, the trade, this game, so we wanted to come out and handle business.”
Clippers guard Austin Rivers, who missed the previous 18 games with a strained Achilles, returned Friday and scored 16 points. Milos Teodosic sat out with a sore right foot. His status for Saturday’s game is unclear.
It remains unclear as to whether Markelle Fultz, the Philadelphia 76ers’ rookie guard, will play at all this season.
It seems increasingly unlikely that another Sixers rookie, guard/forward Ben Simmons, will play in next Sunday’s All-Star Game in Los Angeles.
Joel Embiid shrugged off a sore right ankle to generate 24 points and 16 rebounds as the Sixers (27-25) battered the New Orleans Pelicans 100-82 on Friday night.
Dario Saric also scored 24 points for Philadelphia, which led by as many as 35 en route to its third victory in four games.
Simmons had 10 points, nine rebounds and eight assists, one night after he learned that he had been passed over as an All-Star injury replacement for a third time. Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker was instead chosen to replace the New York Knicks’ Kristaps Porzingis, who tore the ACL in his left knee Tuesday night against Milwaukee.