ROCKETS AT CLIPPERS, 10:30 P.M. ET

TV:  NBA TV

  • The Rockets will be without leading scorer James Harden when they play the Clippers tonight at Staples Center, the team confirmed shortly before the game. Harden stepped on David Lee’s foot and twisted his right ankle Tuesday night in a 116-107 victory at Golden State. Harden was already dealing with a bruised left knee when he sustained the latest injury. By sitting out against the Clippers, he will have a few extra days to recuperate heading into Sunday’s All-Star Game in Houston.
  • The Clippers will have veterans Caron Butler and Chauncey Billups back in the starting lineup tonight. Both missed Monday’s victory in Philadelphia wore lower back pain. Billups has played two games since missing a month with a foot injury. That setback occurred three games after he made his season debut following surgery on a ruptured Achilles tendon last February.
  • The Clippers are coming off an eight-game road trip in which they finished 4-4 but won two of the last three after Chris Paul returned from a nine-game absence because of a bruised right kneecap. They will have all their key players available against the Rockets.

– Dan Arritt

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