Blake Griffin In For Clippers, Joel Embiid Out For Sixers Tuesday

Matthew Jordan

Tuesday, January 24, 2017 2:54 PM UTC

Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017 2:54 PM UTC

The Los Angeles Clippers and Philadelphia 76ers meet for the first time this season Tuesday, meaning it would have been the Clips' first look at excellent Philly rookie Joel Embiid. Except the Rookie of the Year favorite will sit out. There's more good news for L.A.

Joel Embiid is dealing with a left knee bone bruise and won't play Tuesday. He's also out Wednesday, although that has really nothing to do with his injury, but that the 76res are being super-cautious with their superstar after he missed his first two seasons with injuries. Embiid isn't playing both ends of a back-to-back.

Nerlens Noel and Jahlil Okafor will man the center position while Embiid is out. When the "Process" plays this year the 76ers are playing like a 55-win team. When he doesn't, they are one of the NBA's worst. Embiid is that good.  He has 18 20-point games this season, while all other rookies have combined for 14 such games. How young is Embiid? The Clippers' Paul Pierce began playing for Kansas in 1995, the year after Embiid, who played one year there, was born.

The Clippers are 1-1 on a five-game road trip following a 115-105 victory in Atlanta on Monday. It was L.A's first victory since All-Star point guard Chris Paul was lost to thumb surgery last week; the Clips had lost to the lousy Timberwolves and Nuggets without him.

Monday was the Clippers' 18th straight game without All-Star power forward Blake Griffin, but he is expected to return from arthroscopic knee surgery Tuesday. The Clippers have compiled a 10-8 record while he has been sidelined and they are 3-7 this season without both Paul and Griffin. Prior to the injury, Griffin was averaging 21.2 points, 8.8 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game this season. He last played in a game Dec. 18 at Washington.

So the NBA betting line for Tuesday has been in flux -- it's currently Clippers -3.5. Los Angeles has won the past nine meetings vs. the 76ers and five in a row in Philadelphia. The Clippers have covered on NBA picks in eight of the past nine meetings and four of the past five in Philly.

NBA Free Pick: Clippers -3.5Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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