The Los Angeles Clippers staged an epic comeback to beat the Memphis Grizzlies in Sunday night’s Game 1, coming back from down 24 with 8:54 left by ripping off a 28-3 run and winning 99-98. But the news wasn’t all good for the Clippers — small forward Caron Butler broke his left hand earlier in the game.
“I feel terrible for him,” Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro told the L.A. Daily News. “He’s been such a pro for us, but injuries are part of it. Other guys are going to have to step up like they did tonight. But replacing Caron right now … He’s been so valuable for us all year. I know the guys feel bad.”
Butler played 23 minutes earlier in the game, posting 12 points and two rebounds, but he hurt himself getting caught in Rudy Gay’s jersey on a screen early in the third quarter. He tried to stay in the game but later left for an X-ray.
“I was about to go back in the game and got the X-ray results,” Butler said. “I told Coach I was ready, and he was about to throw me back in the fire.”
The exact outlook is unknown on Butler, who also sat out last year’s playoffs with an injury as the Dallas Mavericks won the NBA Finals, but it doesn’t look good. The Clippers take on the Grizzlies on Wednesday night at 9:30 p.m. Eastern for Game 2.