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Preview: Clippers vs. Houston Rockets

Preview: Clippers vs. Houston Rockets
DeAndre Jordan, left, celebrates a basket in front of Houston's Josh Smith, left, and James Harden during a Feb. 11 game at Staples Center. (Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

The Clippers open a four-game road trip as they face off against the Houston Rockets on Wednesday at 5 p.m. PST.

The Clippers are 4-2 since they lost superstar power forward Blake Griffin -- a better-than-expected record that includes a 110-95 win over the Rockets on Feb. 11 in which DeAndre Jordan had 24 points and 20 rebounds.

In that game, the Rockets tried to use Hack-A-Jordan as a strategy, sending the Clippers' center to the free-throw line 26 times -- he made 12 of them.

The Clippers (37-20) are in sixth place in the Western Conference, 1 1/2 games behind the third-place Rockets (38-18).

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Dating back to 2012, the Clippers have won 11 of 12 games against the Rockets, including both of their matchups this season.

Dwight Howard (right knee edema) and Kostas Papanikolaou (sprained right ankle) will be out for the Rockets during Wednesday's game. Patrick Beverley is listed as questionable because of flu-like symptoms.

The Clippers will be playing their seventh straight game without Griffin, who had surgery Feb. 9 to remove a staph infection from his right elbow. Griffin had his stitches removed Monday and has been cleared for light workouts.

In Monday's game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Chris Paul committed a turnover in the final seconds that turned a one-point game into a 90-87 loss for the Clippers, snapping their four-game win streak.

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