Gortat will get the night off for the Clippers' final preseason game versus the Nuggets on Tuesday, Jovan Buha of The Athletic reports. Gortat and Tobias Harris will both rest and set their sights on next week's season opener. He will be replaced at center by Boban Marjanovic. The 12-year veteran will be replacing DeAndre Jordan in the paint for the Clippers this season.
Gortat produced 10 points (5-7 FG), nine rebounds and one assist across 22 minutes during the Clippers' 103-87 preseason win over the Lakers on Saturday. Gortat's near double-double represented his third strong effort in as many exhibitions to open his Clippers career. The 12-year veteran has big shoes to fill as the replacement for the departed DeAndre Jordan, but he boasts a solid resume himself and has demonstrated his prowess on the boards by averaging just under eight rebounds per preseason contest thus far.
Gortat finished with eight points (3-7 FG, 2-2 FT), five rebounds, and one assist in 14 minutes during Wednesday's 128-101 win over the Timberwolves. Gortat played sparingly as the starter, but this was to be expected during the preseason. He will battle backup big man Montrezl Harrell, and to a lesser extent, Boban Marjanovic, for minutes.
Gortat was traded from the Wizards to the Clippers on Tuesday in exchange for Austin Rivers, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports. Gortat and star guard John Wall's relationship had soured a bit last season and it appears the Wizards also could be looking to get more athletic at the center position moving forward. As a result, Gortat will be shipped to the Clippers, where DeAndre Jordan currently slots in as the starting big man. Tuesday's trade likely means Jordan will be on the move in the near future, which would allow Gortat the chance to compete for a spot in the top unit right away. Starting all 82 games with Washington last season, Gortat averaged just 8.4 points, 7.6 rebounds and 1.8 assists across 25.3 minutes, so he's still not the most intriguing fantasy target if Jordan is traded.
Gortat posted 10 points (4-9 FG, 2-2 FT), 12 rebounds, two assists and one block across 34 minutes during Wednesday's 108-98 loss to the Raptors. Gortat topped 30 minutes for the first time this series as Jonas Valanciunas saw extended run as well, notching double-digit rebounds for the first time this series for his first double-double. He struggled a bit offensively, but he still scored in double figures for the fourth time this postseason. The veteran also notably blocked his first shot of the series and will look to put on a similar performance as his team looks to stave off elimination in Game 6 Friday.
Last 7 Games
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