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Report: Billups to return to Clippers Wednesday, will start

Nov 28, 2012, 3:21 PM EDT

Chauncey Billups Clippers AP

Most players who have a major Achilles tendon injury at age 36 are done. It’s time to walk away from the game, spend more time with your family and your golf game.

Not Chauncey Billups. Not Mr. Big Shot. The Clippers guard was going to leave the game on his own terms and worked hard for 10 months to recover from a torn Achilles suffered last February in Orlando.

And Wednesday night at Staples Center he will have made it all the way back, reports Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports.

This is a great pickup for a Clippers team that has struggled the last five games. Billups is not the athlete he was when he was winning an NBA finals MVP in 2004, but he brings a calmness and sense of purpose to the Clippers when he is on the floor. At least he did last season, when he averaged 15 points a game (but shooting just under 40 percent). It’s why Chris Paul pushed the Clippers to bring him back.

It creates a new headache for Vinny Del Negro — he has to find minutes for Billups, Eric Bledsoe (who has been fantastic off the bench and was playing some two alongside CP3) and Jamal Crawford. You get the feeling Willie Green is going to lose out here and go from starter to rarely-seen bench player.

But this is great for the Clippers. And great for Billups, a guy who has earned the right to chose how and when he leaves the game.

  1. paleihe - Nov 28, 2012 at 3:38 PM

    That’s smart. You haven’t played in about a year? Let’s toss you starters minutes!

    • edweird0 - Nov 28, 2012 at 4:55 PM

      lol

    • Distinguished Male - Nov 28, 2012 at 5:20 PM

      It said he’ll start, not get starters minutes. Plenty of guys start and play less than 20 minutes. Well, I don’t know about plenty, but it happens often enough.

      Personally I would love for them to ease Billups back because I’m all for Bledsoe getting more minutes. If Del Negro eats into Bledsoe’s time by giving some to Willie Green, he should be fired immediately. Or at least given a smack upside the head for every minute Green plays.

      • paleihe - Nov 28, 2012 at 6:20 PM

        Yeah, I know what it said. I just have absolutely no faith in VDN.

        It’s pathetic that Bledsoe isn’t getting more minutes. Everyone can see he’s ballin’, this is his break-out season, and coach is holding him back.

  2. dko83 - Nov 28, 2012 at 4:51 PM

    Billups is a leader and they definitely want him there however, Bledsoe is too good to lose minutes as is JC. Kind of an embarrassment of riches at the guard positions for the Clips. I have no doubt Vinny will screw this up somehow though.

  3. moseskkim - Nov 28, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    He will most likely get Willie greens minutes.. All 15? The issue with Bledsoe not receiving enough minutes is nothing more than having the best pg in the world ahead of him on the depth chart (cp3). That’s not billups problem. Bledsoe can keep bringing his energy in small spurts. Clippers are in more obvious need of frontcourt depth.

  4. kylos13 - Nov 28, 2012 at 7:23 PM

    What they really need to do is give Trey Tompkins Lamar Odom’s minutes. The backcourt isn’t really the problem. Willie Green has been good but Chauncey is a different class. Ease him in with 15-20 minutes a night for now and let Bledsoe and Jamal keep the same minutes off the bench. The real problem will be who plays the 2 in crunch time, Mr. Big Shot or out leading scorer?

  5. jerdogthompson - Nov 28, 2012 at 11:53 PM

    Paleihe

    Not sure how long you’ve been watching this team but I guarantee this is nothing but great news for the Clipps. CB had 10 minutes and logged 7 points in the first half. Not too shabby meat. As the writer pointed out he’s an on the court coach with valuable playoff experience this team needs. It’s only up from here.

    • paleihe - Nov 29, 2012 at 1:07 PM

      I’ve watched the Clippers since the days of Loy Vaught, so quite a while, lol.

      I don’t mind Billups getting lots of PT, he’s a solid player. But, they have to find a way to get Bledsoe more time, much more time. He should be close to 30 a night. He does so many positive things, it’s ridiculous.

  6. abchome - Nov 29, 2012 at 3:50 AM

    Looking pretty good in the first game back.

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