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Paul George’s season over, playoff availability for Los Angeles Clippers up in the air

Paul George’s availability for the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round of the 2023 NBA playoffs is very much up in the air after his latest injury on Tuesday night.

The Los Angeles Clippers have been constantly hampered by injuries to their top two players over the last few seasons. When perennial All-Stars Paul George and Kawhi Leonard were paired up four seasons ago, there were championship dreams running through the organization. However, the duo has not been able to consistently be on the court together when it matters most.

Related: Clippers star Paul George suffers ugly-looking leg injury

This season was focused on getting Leonard fully recovered from ACL surgery and ready to go for the stretch run of the season and the NBA playoffs. While there have been bumps in the road, the team seemed on track to be at full strength once the postseason began. But those plans took a major hit on Tuesday.

During the team’s loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder yesterday, George collided knees with Lu Dort after landing on one leg following a rebound. The video of the moment showed George’s knee bending badly in the opposite direction and he immediately collapsing onto the court.

Paul George stats (2022): 23.8 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 5.1 APG, 1.5 SPG, 37% 3PT

paul george
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Well, after having his knee tested on Wednesday, the results are not good news for Los Angeles Clippers fans. ESPN NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski was one of the first to report that Paul George has been diagnosed with a sprained knee, and the organization won’t know his long-term health prognosis until the joint is reevaluated in two to three weeks.

George is expected to miss the team’s final nine games of the season and his availability for the postseason is totally up in the air. The postseason begins two days after the team’s final regular season game on April 11. If he can’t be reevaluated for three weeks, it would definitely place him in an area where missing their first games of the postseason is possible.

Fortunately for the Los Angeles Clippers are the fifth seed in the Western Conference and out of the play-in tournament. However, they are only a game and a half out of playing in the mini-tournament, and his missing those tourney matchups and the team being eliminated from the postseason early is possible.

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