Marcus Morris will not make his Clippers debut Saturday when his new team begins a four-game trip by facing Minnesota.
Morris underwent a physical exam in Los Angeles on Friday. A plane carrying Morris arrived in Minnesota on Saturday afternoon, three hours before tipoff. One hour later, he was ruled out of playing.
Morris, in his first interview since the trade from the New York Knicks, said he was excited to play for a championship contender.
“It means a lot. I just want to come and add to it, be all about winning,” Morris said before tipoff inside Target Center. “Let’s chase what the main goal is, that’s to win the championship, and I’m happy to be here. It’s a long time coming since last summer. I’m excited.”
The Clippers traded forward Maurice Harkless, a 2020 first-round draft pick, a 2021 second-round pick via Detroit and the right to swap 2021 first-round picks with New York on Thursday in exchange for Morris as part of a larger, three-team trade that included Washington.
The Clippers have pursued the 6-foot-8 forward since last summer, when they courted him, unsuccessfully, in free agency.
Also Saturday, the team waived guard Isaiah Thomas, who had been acquired from Washington.
The addition of Morris gives the Clippers an NBA-high five scorers averaging at least 19 points per game, but getting the full look at that lineup is expected to take at least two more games.
After facing the Timberwolves on Saturday, the Clippers (36-15) play Sunday in Cleveland. Kawhi Leonard is expected to sit out that game as he has yet to play on consecutive nights this season, but Morris is expected to play his first game in a Clippers uniform against the Cavaliers.