The Clippers are a team that relies on its starting unit to get the job done, perhaps more than any other team in the league. Because of injuries and the club's overall lack of depth, L.A.'s starters are forced to play the bulk of the game's minutes if the team wants to have a chance to win. With Marcus Camby missing the game due to personal reasons, and Zach Randolph going out with a knee injury in the fourth quarter, L.A. had no fire power left and fell to the Raptors, 97-75.
Brian Skinner got his first start of the season in place of Camby, but could only contribute one point, three rebounds, and five fouls over 16 minutes. Baron Davis had 16 points and nine assists, but continued his shooting woes with a 4-of-16 effort from the field. Zach Randolph finished with 19 points and eight rebounds, but injured his knee and had to leave the game just as the Clippers were making a run to try and steal this one.
L.A. was down by 19 points at halftime, but outscored the Raptors by 10 in the third and had cut the lead to just six early in the fourth before Randolph left the game. Seeing him leave the court killed any momentum the Clips had at that point, as Baron Davis explained afterwards.
"That was tough," Davis said. "It shocked everybody that he was walking off the court. He's our horse. He's the guy we're going to go to on the block, so we want him to have the ball because he scores on anybody and he makes good decisions. So anytime you lose your horse, your go-to guy, it's tough."
Randolph is hopeful that the injury isn't too serious, but the team won't know more until today or tomorrow when they can give him a more complete examination.
"Hopefully it's just a bone bruise," Randolph said. "It's a little sore, but I expect that right now. I just need to keep icing it."