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- Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving (hyperextended right knee) will miss his third straight game. The first-time NBA All-Star participated in Cleveland’s morning shootaround, but was ruled out by coach Byron Scott less than one hour before the opening tip. “I want Kyrie to be 100 percent, not just ‘better’ before we bring him back,” Scott said. Irving was injured in practice one week ago, but an MRI taken Tuesday in Chicago revealed no structural damage. The Cavaliers continue to list him as day-to-day.
- Clippers center DeAndre Jordan (nose bruise) underwent X-rays on his face, but they were negative. The 6-foot-11 pivot was struck Thursday during Los Angeles’ 99-91 win in Indiana, suffering a bloody nose that temporarily forced him out of the game. “DeAndre had a scan and X-rays, but he’s fine,” Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said. “Nothing is broken.” Los Angeles shooting guard Chauncey Billups (back soreness) also will start after playing 21 minutes against the Pacers.
- With Irving out, Shaun Livingston makes his third consecutive start at point guard for the Cavaliers. Shooting guard Dion Waiters, small forward Alonzo Gee, power forward Tristan Thompson, and center Tyler Zeller round out their lineup. Cleveland is 4-9 without Irving this season, but has won both games that Livingston has started. “They are playing very well without Irving,” Del Negro said.
- The Clippers’ starters are point guard Chris Paul, Billups, small forward Caron Butler, power forward Blake Griffin, and Jordan. Los Angeles is 2-15 all-time at Quicken Loans Arena, which opened at the start of the 1994-1995 NBA season. “I look at them in the West as a team that can win it all,” Scott said. “And they’ve got the ultimate leader in Chris Paul. My guy CP is doing fantastic.”
- Inactive for the Cavaliers are point guard Josh Selby (NBA D-League assignment with Canton Charge) and center Anderson Varejao (season-ending right knee surgery), while the Clippers are without power forward Trey Thompkins (left knee bruise) for the 61st game in a row.
– Brian Dulik