Apr 29, 2012; Memphis, TN, USA; Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul (3) drives to the basket against Memphis Grizzlies small forward Rudy Gay (22) during the second half of game one in the Western Conference quarterfinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs at FedEx Forum. The Clippers won 99-98. Mandatory Credit: Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Paul (knee) and Rudy Gay (funeral) out for Clippers-Grizzlies game.

This certainly wasn’t what the television folks and odds makers were hoping for when they put this match-up on the schedule, but it looks like the two premier players for both teams will miss tonight’s epic rematch between the Los Angeles Clippers and Memphis Grizzlies.

After bumping knees with J.J. Redick against the Orlando Magic, Chris Paul will miss his first start of the season against the Memphis Grizzlies Monday night in Memphis. Paul sounded doubtful before the announcement, “I don’t know yet. If a miracle comes through,” Paul told the Los Angeles Times. “I want to play, no question. But if I feel like I’ll hinder the team, then I won’t.”

With Paul unable to go, Eric Bledsoe will get the start in his place, with Jamal Crawford shifting over to reserve point guard.

It has also been reported in the Memphis Commercial Appeal that Rudy Gay will miss tonight’s game against the Los Angeles Clippers to attend his grandmother’s funeral. Gay also missed a game in late December to attend to his ailing relative. It is not known who will replace him in the lineup as his normal backup, Quincy Pondexter, is out with a knee injury.

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Tags: Blake Griffin Chris Paul DeAndre Jordan Eric Bledsoe Jamal Crawford LA Clippers Lamar Odom Los Angeles Clippers Los Angeles Clippers Rudy Gay Vinny Del Negro

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