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Preview: Hawks host Clippers, aim to avoid third straight loss

NBA: Atlanta Hawks at Los Angeles Clippers Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE: Trae Young (right thigh contusion) has been added to the injury report as questionable for Wednesday’s game. DeAndre’ Bembry (personal reasons) has been ruled out for Atlanta. Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and Patrick Beverley are all out for tonight’s game against the Hawks.

The Atlanta Hawks nearly pulled off a stunning comeback on Monday afternoon, pushing the Toronto Raptors to the brink before ultimately falling by a five-point margin. After a day off on Tuesday, Lloyd Pierce’s team returns to action on Wednesday, with the L.A. Clippers in town for their annual visit.

The Clippers arrive on the second night of a back-to-back and, while that always adds some intrigue, that is especially true this time around. L.A. hasn’t released an official injury report as of Wednesday morning and that brings mystery. Kawhi Leonard hasn’t played in a back-to-back all season and, considering the reigning NBA Finals MVP took the floor on Tuesday, precedent would dictate that he would not play in Atlanta. On the flip side, Paul George (hamstring) traveled with the Clippers to Dallas and he could conceivably play for the first time since Jan. 5. Finally, Patrick Beverley (sore right groin) left Tuesday’s game early and, as such, could be unavailable.

Even if the Clippers don’t have Leonard or George, L.A. still arrives with plenty of firepower, with Montrezl Harrell and Gwinnett County’s own Lou Williams at the forefront. On the Hawks side, there is uncertainty with Alex Len, as the veteran center has missed four straight games with a back ailment and he is listed as questionable on the team’s official report.

Expectations could vary wildly based on the availability of Leonard and George (or even Beverley) but, at the very least, the Hawks will likely enter the game as underdogs. It remains to be seen as to how the team will respond to Monday’s loss, but this is an opportunity for a bounce-back win before Atlanta hits the road to Oklahoma City for a game on Friday.

Stay tuned throughout the day and be encouraged to utilize the comments below as a “game thread” for the action.

Game Info

Game Date/Time: Wednesday, Jan. 22, 7:30 pm ET

Location: State Farm Arena

TV: Fox Sports Southeast, NBA League Pass

Radio: 92.9 The Game (Atlanta); Hawks Radio Network

Streaming: Fox Sports Go, NBA League Pass