The Clippers need Matt Barnes off the bench — he’s about the only guy off the bench who could be considered a plus defender — but they are going to be without him for a couple weeks.
Barnes is going to have surgery to repair a retinal tear in his left eye, the team announced Thursday night. Two weeks is considered the minimum for his return, it could be a little longer.
The injury was suffered Monday night when Zach Randolph of the Memphis Grizzlies poked him in the eye. It was not intentional.
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With Barnes out, expect to see a lot more Jared Dudley and Reggie Bullock.
But as noted, Barnes will be missed. The Clippers defense is actually good when their starters are on the floor (under a point per possession), it is when they go to the bench that things fall apart. Barnes helps stem that tide a little, but he can’t for the next couple weeks.