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Los Angeles Clippers guard Austin Rivers is planning to return to the lineup for Game 5 of the Western Conference first-round series against the Utah Jazz, league sources told The Vertical. Rivers, who has missed 11 games with a hamstring injury, will be on restricted minutes Tuesday night at the Staples Center with the series tied at two games, league sources said.
But as coach Doc Rivers looks at his shallow bench, he's still searching for man No. 7. Rivers would love to get his son, swingman Austin Rivers, back in a jersey before the end of this first-round series, but it is unlikely he will get the chance to suit up before Game 5. "I don't think so," Doc Rivers said Friday when asked if Austin Rivers could be ready in time for Sunday's Game 4 in Salt Lake City. "I don't know. I think he probably thinks that for sure. He's feeling better. He's working out. But I just don't see that. I think that's awfully quick."
Ahead of Saturday afternoon's matchup against their inner-city rival Los Angeles Lakers, head coach Doc Rivers delivered an update on his son's injured hamstring when asked about his likelihood of missing the final five games of the season. "I would say most likely, yes," said the elder Rivers about his son Austin missing the remainder of the regular season. "I think it's a little more serious [than we initially thought]."
To make matters a bit worse, Doc says the younger Rivers' injury could potentially hamper him into the postseason, but says the team just doesn’t know how much time he will end up missing.
The NBA playoffs are scheduled to start April 15. “I’m disappointed,” Austin Rivers said. “I was looking forward to this year’s playoffs. The goal was game one of the playoffs, but it’s looking like hopefully midfirst round, early second round. We’ll see. You never know, I might heal faster than I think so. “In my mind, my goal is to be back by the first round, for game one or game two, which is ideal. So, we’ll see.”
Even with all that, Rivers wasn’t sure if the heavy workload caused his injury. “I don’t know if that was due to me pulling my hamstring. I don’t know. It’s a sucky thing,” Rivers said. “It’s not that serious, serious of an injury. It’s just bad timing. Two weeks out with an injury is not crazy. It’s just the timing of it; man, the timing of me getting it. It’s just (messy) timing. I’m getting it a week and a half before the playoffs with a three- or four-week injury. It’s just not good timing.”
Austin Rivers is already expected to miss the rest of the regular season with a strained left hamstring, suffered in Wednesday’s win over Washington. “The Austin injury is absolutely a byproduct of the schedule,” Doc Rivers said.
Bill Oram: Doc Rivers said Austin Rivers hamstring strain is "a pretty good one." Hopes to have him back by start of playoffs.
The L.A. Clippers announced today that guard Austin Rivers suffered a left hand fracture in the second quarter of the Clippers loss to Minnesota on Feb. 3. Rivers did not play in the Clippers game Feb. 5 in Orlando and underwent an MRI Feb. 6 in Miami that revealed the fracture.
Los Angeles Clippers guard Austin Rivers has been diagnosed with a broken left hand and likely will be out four to six weeks, sources said. Rivers suffered the injury moments before he was ejected for arguing with officials Wednesday in the Clippers' loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves. Initial X-rays came back negative, and Rivers told reporters he believed he had a bone bruise.
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