|Paul (right shoulder) hasn't played for the Clippers since January 3rd|
The Los Angeles Clippers are 29-15 so far in this half-finished 2013-14 season, which is good enough for Doc Rivers' team to be the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference as of this moment. Another notable aspect of L.A.'s season is that the Clips have not had star point guard Chris Paul in the lineup since early this month (nine games), but have managed to win six of those nine games, continuing their success from when he was healthy.
On January 3rd, in a win against the Dallas Mavericks, Paul separated his right shoulder and hasn't been back in action since. However, he has made it clear that he wants to be on the floor in less than a month for February 16th's All-Star game in New Orleans, where he spent the beginning of his career as a member of the Hornets (now Pelicans).
From Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com: "If I can play, I'm going to play, I love to play that much," Paul said Wednesday. "The All-Star Game is in New Orleans and that's part of me. That's where I played my very first All-Star Game at. Anytime you have that opportunity, I'm not going to pass that up because it's not guaranteed to happen next year."
"Oh yeah, no question, I'll be there," Paul said. "I'll definitely be there."
The All-Star starters are announced tonight on TNT, and the reserves in a week, so Paul's name is almost certain to be announced either today or in seven days, as he was leading Western Conference guards in votes before his injury (Stephen Curry has that honor now).
It appears clear from his words that his shoulder is relatively close to being healthy, since he is so adamant he will be ready for the All-Star Game, which is around four weeks away.
That is good news for both the Clippers and the NBA, as Los Angeles needs its franchise point guard back while the All-Star Game will certainly be more fun with CP3 in the mix, especially in a city that idolized him for six seasons. Let's hope his shoulder heals as well as it can, and soon too.
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