NBA Above the Rim: Paul Works out, Butler Most Improved, Wall Fractured
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Chris Paul worked out on the court Thursday. That's a positive sign in his struggle to overcome a strained left hamstring, though it's not known whether he can play for the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 3 against the Houston Rockets Friday night.
Coach Doc Rivers said on a teleconference that "everything is going well" with the All-Star guard. But his status is unknown going into Friday night, when the series resumes at Staples Center. The teams are tied 1-1 after a split in Houston.
In other NBA news:
— Chicago Bulls guard Jimmy Butler is the NBA's Most Improved Player after making his first All-Star team and averaging a career high in scoring. The 25-year-old Butler received 92 of 129 first-place votes to outdistance Golden State's Draymond Green for the honor. Butler averaged 20 points, 5.8 rebounds and 3.3 assists this season after contributing 13.1 points, 4.9 boards and 2.6 assists last year.
— The Washington Wizards don't know the playing status of All-Star guard John Wall after he was diagnosed with five non-displaced fractures in his left wrist and hand. Initial X-rays were negative after he was injured during the opener of the Wizards' Eastern Conference semifinal series against Atlanta. Washington coach Randy Wittman wouldn't rule Wall out for Saturday's game, but he added the team has to prepare to play without him.
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