The Clippers were already facing an uphill climb to start the 2021-22 season with Kawhi Leonard sidelined indefinitely. The two-time NBA Finals MVP suffered a partially torn ACL during the 2021 NBA playoffs and has not been given a specific return timeline since undergoing surgery last year.
Now, Los Angeles is attempting to stay afloat without the services of its second-best player. All-Star forward Paul George is currently out of the rotation as he allows a right elbow injury to heal. The 31-year-old could make his way back to the floor later this season, but a major surgery has not yet been ruled out.
Here’s everything we know about Paul George’s injury and the latest news on when he may return to court.
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Paul George injury timeline
— Dec. 6, 2021: George suffered a sprained right elbow during the Clippers’ 102-90 win against the Trail Blazers. I have finished that game with 21 points, eight rebounds, four assists and four steals.
— Dec. 7-19, 2021: George missed the Clippers’ next five games to rest his injured elbow. Los Angeles won three consecutive home games against Boston, Orlando and Phoenix before losing two away games against Utah and Oklahoma City.
— Dec. 20-22, 2021: George returned for a home game against the Spurs, scoring 25 points in a 116-92 loss. He also played in the Clippers’ next game against the Kings, posting 17 points, six assists, five steals and four rebounds in a 105-89 win.
— Dec. 25, 2021: The Clippers announced George suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow and would be re-evaluated in January.
The Clippers say Paul George will be reevaluated in 3-4 weeks because of an elbow injury. pic.twitter.com/kBcrfrvaly
—Andrew Greif (@AndrewGreif) December 25, 2021
— Jan. 12, 2022: Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer reported the Clippers are “operating under the possibility” George may miss the remainder of the 2021-22 season.
— Jan. 18, 2022: ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported George will be out for “a few more weeks.”
Plan continues to be to evaluate how Paul George’s right elbow responds to rest over next few weeks, sources tell ESPN. https://t.co/kqTv35syqO
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 18, 2022
— Jan. 25, 2021: On the “Brian Windhorst and The Hoop Collective” podcast, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported that surgery is a “real option” for George.
“It’s almost like I’m waiting for bad news on Paul George because they just, you know — it sounds like surgery is a real option there,” Windhorst said. “And if he has that, he’s done for the year.”
Paul George 2021-22 stats, highlights
- 24.7 points per game
- 7.1 rebounds per game
- 5.5 assists per game
- 2.0 steals per game
- 0.4 blocks per game
- 4.2 turnovers per game
- 35.5 minutes per game
- 42.1 percent shooting
- 32.3 percent 3-point shooting
- 88.0 percent free throw shooting