Clippers star Paul George out vs. Rockets, questionable to play vs. Pelicans
George has been officially ruled out for Wednesday’s game against the Houston Rockets as he recovers from offseason shoulder surgeries. Additionally, he s listed as questionable for Thursday when his squad takes on the New Orleans Pelicans.
Clippers say Paul George (shoulder) is OUT tonight against the Rockets, as is Landry Shamet (high ankle sprain). George's next opportunity to make his Clippers debut is tomorrow night against the Pelicans.
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) November 13, 2019
George, whose arrival in Los Angeles made an enormous splash, has yet to play alongside fellow star Kawhi Leonard. Even without George available, the Clippers have gotten out to a 7-3 start to the 2019-20 season.
Optimism abounds, even with George sitting courtside in dress clothes.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported that George was set to make his debut at some point during the team’s upcoming road trip. With his status for the first of the two games set in stone, that would lend credence to the idea that he would suit up Thursday for an up-tempo match-up versus the Pelicans.
Los Angeles Clippers All-Star Paul George will make his franchise debut during upcoming roadtrip to Houston (Wednesday) and New Orleans (Thursday), league sources tell ESPN. George and Clippers still deciding on first game. He had been rehabilitating offseason shoulder surgeries.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 12, 2019
Another layer to the story has been whether or not the Clippers will stagger George along with Leonard, who has sat out at least one leg of back-to-backs for more than a year. Leonard has been cleared to play Wednesday, which makes his availability Thursday murky.
In George’s final season in Oklahoma City, he recorded career highs in scoring (28.0), rebounds (8.2), assists (4.1) and steals (2.2) per game, all while playing nearly 37 minutes on a nightly basis. Whether he can match those totals during his first year in Los Angeles remains to be seen, but it appears that the league is on the precipice of finding out.