Injury updates

It looks like Baron Davis and Tim Thomas will play in tommorrow’s season opener. Officially they are probable, which means that they could technically sit out if they have any kind of setback, but after talking to coach Dunleavy and both guys after practice today, it sounded pretty solid that they’d be out there. Both went through the full practice today.

Marcus Camby (bruised heel) is officially listed as “doubtful” and I wouldn’t be surprised, at this point if he missed the first two or three games.

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Daily update

Baron Davis and Tim Thomas practiced today and subjected themselves to “limited contact,” which was an upgrade from yesterday’s “no contact.”

Marcus Camby didn’t practice again, but is “feeling better.”

No determination on any of their status’ for Wednesday’s season opener will be made until at least Tuesday afternoon, but more likely Wednesday morning.

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Answers Part IV

Here’s the last set of answers. Thanks for all the questions folks. I’ll open the floor up again in the middle of next week and do it again.

Is coach working on improving ball movement on offense? It seems like the better teams in the West really move the ball around, and I’m not sure the Clippers are emphasizing this.

Coach is emphasizing a lot of things in training camp, but nothing more so than the importance of defense. Every player in the lockeroom talks about it. The other night, I asked Ricky Davis whether the Clippers had a chance to be like the Phoenix Suns or Golden State Warriors of the last few years and he said he’d rather be like the Boston Celtics of last year.

That said, with regard to the offense, it’s been very hard to tell yet what kind of team the Clippers will be because of all the injuries. So much of the offense will flow from Baron Davis that it’s not even worth drawing conclusions from the way the team has played during exhibition games.

How is everyone getting along (on-court/off-court chemistry) and adjusting to their new teammates? How are the vets (Cat, Kaman, Thomas, etc.) liking the new training facility?

From the looks of things, Mobley and Thomas have bonded very quickly with the new guys, specifically with Baron Davis. Mobley and Baron are the unquestioned leaders of the team at this point. Kaman, I think, takes his time a bit more. That doesn’t mean he’s not fitting in though. When people get to know him, he’s quite endearing. As Baron put it on his blog, “Chris Kaman is funny as hell!!! How does this guy not have his own reality show…? Seriously, I’m gonna follow him around with my camera after practice and call it “Life On Mars.” I want royalties if they go with that name tho… LOL.”

The practice facility is hard not to love. It’s state of the art in every way. I’d even venture to say it’s one of the nicest complexes in the NBA.

Are they still looking for a 4th PG? Is Lindsay Hunter still being considered?

As far as I know, no. Lindsey Hunter was brought in when the team was still awaiting word on the severity of Baron Davis’ finger injury. He had a really good workout, so if Baron has any setbacks, I’m sure Hunter would be right back in the picture. But as far as I know, the team is going with the 14 players it has right now on the roster. They had been pretty adamant about wanting to stick with 14 all through training camp, which is why Jelani McCoy is gone even though he had a pretty good camp.

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Answers Part III

Everyone knows that the New Jersey Nets are on their rebuilding mode. Well just by saying that… Are the Clips making an offer to trade Cat Mobley & Tim Thomas for Vince Carter?

The Clippers have continuous discussions with a lot of teams, just as all NBA teams do. That doesn’t mean anything is imminent. And I’d say a deal for Carter is unlikely, mostly because if New Jersey were to trade Vince, it’d be very hard to a. sell tickets in the short run and b. convince LeBron James in 2010 that the situation there offers him a greater chance to win than he’s currently got in Cleveland. Also, since the object of that kind of a trade would be to unload Carter’s contract for two contracts that have only two years left on them –thus clearing space for the summer of 2010– why would the Clippers want to help New Jersey out? Wouldn’t it be smarter to just clear space for 2010 for themselves…

Whats the latest on Sofo? Are they ever going to bring him over from Greece? When do they lose his rights?

I’m going to have to look into this one and get back to you next week. Sorry about that. If you read Greek, have a look at his website and tell me what it says :) I noticed there was still a link to the Clippers on it.

I thought I saw somewhere that we had the T-wolves first round pick next year. Is that true or is it lottery protected like the previous years?

Yes, it’s true. But the pick is Top 10 protected until 2012, the seventh year after the Marko Jaric trade. That means the Clips get Minnesota’s first round pick as soon as that pick is 11 or higher until 2012, when they’d get Minnesota’s first round pick unconditionally.

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Answers Part II

Question: What is the deal with Tim Thomas? When will he return? Seems like he’s always having groin or back problems. I think he is one who will really benefit from having Baron man the point, as witnessed in the Clips-Lakers game a couple weeks ago.

I actually just spoke with Tim about this yesterday and got the impression that he’s just being extra, extra cautious with this injury because it’s the preseason. If this were the regular season, it’s reasonable to assume he’d be playing right now. I don’t blame him at all because groin injuries, like hamstrings or quads, tend to linger if you don’t take your time coming back from them.

That said, it’s disappointing both he and Baron have missed so much time this preseason. Before they got hurt, Mike Dunleavy said that this was the best Tim had “ever looked” since he came to L.A. Not surprising when you remember that Tim’s most productive years came as a member of the run-and-gun Phoenix Suns, when he had an elite point guard –Steve Nash — finding him for spot up 3s. In the first two weeks of training camp, it seemed like Thomas and Baron had that chemistry as well. I expect Thomas to be ready for opening night on Wednesday. Baron will probably be ready, but we have to see how it goes this weekend when he tries to practice for the first time.

Can you talk to Dunleavy about his suits? Man! I thought I had bad taste in clothes! Who dresses the guy? Or maybe that’s the problem, he needs someone to dress him!

I know coach pretty well at this point, but not well enough to know who dresses him. Sorry, there are certain things that are and should stay off the record. That said, I have noticed Mike likes to mix and match jackets and pants. Light jacket, dark pants. Dark jacket, light pants. It’s just his look. I watch Project Runway, but that’s really the extent of my fashion experience, so I wouldn’t feel qualified to make any statements on the “fashionable-ness” (is that a word?) of his style.

I’ve been a clipper fan for 20 years and can’t remember them updating their uniforms like other teams. I desperately want to buy some clipper gears for my 3 year old and my new son (born last week) but can’t stand their old, tired look. Are they ever going to update their uniforms? Can you please ask them to update their uniforms?

Congrats on the newborn! Don’t know that they make Clipper gear for kids quite that young though. As for plans on new uniforms, I’m pretty sure that has to go through the league office so it’s not just up to the Clippers. A couple of years ago though, they did add the blue jerseys. They don’t wear them very often, but they are in the repertoire. Don’t know how you feel about blue, but it is a different look.

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Answers Part I

“OK, here’s one… Do you know the contract details for rookies DeAndre Jordan and Mike Taylor? I’ve seen a few different reports. They’ve usually been reported as 2 year deals, but ShamSports.com (usually pretty reliable) shows a non-guaranteed third year (which would be great, especially for 2010 cap space).

The Clippers liked both Taylor and Jordan enough to give them three-year contracts, however only the first year is guaranteed. Jordan is making $550,000 this season, Taylor $500,000. The league minimum for rookies is $442,114 so both guys are making more than that.

Their second and third years become guaranteed if they’re on the roster after a certain date. I wasn’t able to pin down exactly which dates, but I believe it’s July 31 after the first year and July 1 after the second year. In year two, both would make the second-year minimum of $736,420. In year three, the minimum would be $854,389.

The team’s philosophy on both guys was to reward them with more than the minimum salary in their rookie year in exchange for a longer contract (three-years).

Chris Kaman has looked completely out of it during the preseason and during the Olympics. Horrible strings of turnovers, can’t make a short shot. Hopefully last night’s game was a sign that he’s waking up. My question is: Is he OK? Is he injured or tired? Has he been using the biofeedback machine all summer?

From what I understand, Chris’ feet and ankles are generally OK, but he’s having some lingering pain and soreness in them, so he’s got to keep an eye on it. It’s hard to put a label on what’s ailing him. It’s basically a combination of plantar fasciitis and just “soreness” that happens after a player comes back from a serious ankle injury. One day after practice, coach Dunleavy was telling us all about the high-tech ways the team has for treating plantar fasciitis, so it seems like they’re doing everything they can to keep a handle on it.

Generally speaking though, this is not uncommon for 7-footers like Kaman, who have to be especially vigilant about their feet and ankles.

As for his slow start, Kaman was quoted in this newspaper and the Times the other night as saying he didn’t bring the level of intensity that he needed to and “that’s on me.” After that, he went out and had two pretty good preseason games, so it looks like that issue has been self-corrected.

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