As has become commonplace in the NBA, the first pre-season game is usually without star-power. As players are coming off of long playoff runs, and are often at more advanced stages in their careers, coaches usually opt to rest their stars until later in the preseason. Ty Lue announced he will be sticking with that gameplay as well.
At Sunday morning's practice in Los Angeles, Ty Lue told the media that Paul George, Nicolas Batum, and Marcus Morris will not be active for the Clippers' pre-season opener on Monday. This is in addition to Kawhi Leonard, Serge Ibaka, and Jason Preston, who are all dealing with injuries.
George logged 776 minutes in the postseason which was 6th most in the entire NBA, while Marcus Morris logged 604, and Batum logged 555. Each of these players were asked to shoulder an increased workload while Kawhi Leonard was out, and will likely be asked to do the same throughout the regular season. For now, Ty Lue is playing it safe.
With these three veterans sidelined, the Clippers will have an opportunity to let their youth and new additions get an opportunity to compete against NBA-level talent. The team features several young players, including Harry Giles and Isaiah Harenstein, the two big men who are competing for one final roster spot.
The Clippers will be taking on the Denver Nuggets at 7:30 PM at Staples Center to open pre-season play.