Sports

Clippers' Chris Paul will be out six weeks but doesn't need surgery

Chris Paul underwent an MRI exam Sunday that revealed a Grade 3 AC joint separation of his right shoulder that the Clippers said would sideline their All-Star guard up to six weeks.

Paul will not require surgery on his shoulder, the team announced.

The AC joint separation is an injury to the area connecting the collarbone with the front part of the shoulder blade, and a Grade 3 is considered the worst of the three grades.

In order for the ligament to heal in Paul's shooting shoulder, he'll have to keep it immobilized for a few weeks and then begin range-of-motion work.

When Paul was injured Friday night at Dallas, the Clippers thought he would be out three to five weeks.

A potential six-week timetable would have the point guard returning after the All-Star break, which is Feb. 14-17. Their first game after the break is Feb. 18 against the San Antonio Spurs at Staples Center.

A six-week absence would cause Paul to miss a total of 20 games.

The Clippers are 10-10 when Paul hasn't played since he joined the team for the 2011-12 season.

The Clippers are 109-55 when Paul does play.

They beat Dallas after Paul was injured in the third quarter Friday night but lost to the Spurs on Saturday night.

"No one can replace Chris," Blake Griffin said Saturday night. "Not his voice. Not his game. Nothing. Everybody does things differently. We don't have any other guys that talk like Chris."

Looking for replacements

With Paul out, Coach Doc Rivers said after Saturday night's game that the Clippers would be looking for another player.

The Clippers started the process by waiving backup point guard Maalik Wayns on Sunday.

That means the Clippers have a 14-player roster and now have room to add a player.

Rivers said they would look at free-agent point guards, or guards in the NBA's Development League, or players overseas, or maybe even a small forward with ballhandling skills.

Point guards Bobby Brown and Jamaal Tinsley are two players who could be available.

Brown is playing in China for the Dongguan Leopards but has an NBA opt-out clause in his contract.

He played two years in the NBA, including 23 games with the Clippers the 2009-10 season.

Tinsley is a 10-year veteran who played eight games with the Utah Jazz this season before he was waived.

The 6-foot-3 Tinsley, 35, has career averages of 8.5 points and 6.1 assists a game.

broderick.turner@latimes.com

Twitter: @BA_Turner

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