According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Clippers guard Lou Williams will play Tuesday afternoon vs the Phoenix Suns, making his debut in the Orlando bubble.
Williams had not played yet in the bubble after leaving to attend to a family matter and then having a 10-day re-entry quarantine imposed upon him for visiting a strip club while outside of the bubble.
As I noted in the game preview for today’s match-up, I expect Lou Williams will play limited minutes vs the Suns initially as he works himself back into the team. Patrick Beverley, upon his own return from a family emergency, played just 16 minutes on opening night against the Lakers. We should expect to see a similar caution on display with Williams.
For more on Tuesday’s slate of NBA bubble games, check out the August 4th edition of Rooting Interests, a daily breakdown of the impact each game has on the seeding races in the Western and Eastern conferences.
However, even in limited minutes, getting Lou back is great news for the Clippers. From a bench role, Williams is the Clippers’ third-leading scorer and leads the team in assists per game with 5.7. His potent scoring ability gives the Clippers a more viable second-unit attack when Paul George and Kawhi Leonard are off the floor, and his ability to create shots for himself and others will ease the creative burden placed upon Reggie Jackson in the last two games.
Jackson, who was stellar in 9 regular season games for the Clippers before the season was suspended, had struggled in the two bubble games so far without another ball-handler in the lineup with him.
With Williams back, the Clippers are finally just one player away from having an intact roster: Montrezl Harrell, who dealt with a family tragedy of his own last week. Doc Rivers had a compassionate response to Trez’s situation: the Clippers will welcome him back whenever he’s ready.
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