Eye surgery successful for Clippers' Matt Barnes

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Clippers announced that small forward Matt Barnes had successful surgery Thursday night to repair a torn retina in his left eye.

The Clippers said Barnes will be out a minimum of two weeks following the procedure.

Barnes was injured during Monday night's game against the Grizzlies, when Memphis forward Zach Randolph hit Barnes with an inadvertent elbow.

Barnes had played in eight games this season and was averaging 5.9 points and 4.3 rebounds per game in 20.0 minutes.

"It's personally been a tough start to the season for me," Barnes said on his Twitter account, @Matt_Barnes22.

Barnes had missed three games with a bruised right thigh.

Barnes also was fined $25,000 by the NBA last week for inappropriate language he used on Twitter after being ejected from the Clippers-Thunder game last week because of a fight with Oklahoma's Serge Ibaka.

"Matt is a big piece to our team," Chris Paul said. "We want him to get healthy as soon as possible, but there is no rush. Like I said, it's the big picture for us. We want Matt back healthy whenever that will be."

Clippers improving composure

Clippers Coach Doc Rivers said he has talked to his team about "composure all the time," knowing full well the Clippers had a tendency last season to lose their composure.

"We tend to lose our focus on things that have nothing to do with the game," Rivers said. "That's something we work on every day. We talk about it every day and we've gotten so much better about it."

Rivers said he gets on the officials often, but he said "the game doesn't stop" when a player or coach is upset.

The Clippers were known around the NBA last season as whiners.

But this season, under Rivers, the Clippers mostly have kept a cool head.

"Whether you're mad, happy or whatever, the game is going to continue to play and you have to continue to play," Rivers said. "I think we're really doing a nice job at it, or getting better at it for sure."

Hollins in mix

In the last two games, Clippers backup center Ryan Hollins has been the third big man off the bench.

He played 10 minutes 24 seconds against the Thunder on Thursday night before fouling out.

Hollins had five points, four rebounds and one blocked shot against the Thunder.

Against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday, Hollins played 20:34.

He had five points, three rebounds and two blocks against Minnesota.

"I like his energy," Rivers said. "I think he's doing a lot of things. He's a natural irritant. So, it's good to have that."


Twitter: BA_Turner

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