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Clippers bring Alex Acker to town, waive Cheikh Samb

Chris Kaman moves the ball past the Denver Nuggets' Nene, left, and J.R. Smith.

The Clippers kicked off what could be an active week by making a small deal, acquiring guard Alex Acker from the Pistons and waiving center Cheikh Samb. Acker happened to be at home in San Dimas, making it the ultimate no-fuss trip. A nice easy ride -- despite the rain -- to meet the team plane in Los Angeles in order to take off for Phoenix.

If the necessary paperwork is completed in time, there is a possibility Acker will be able to practice with the team later this afternoon in Phoenix. The Clippers play the Suns on Tuesday.

This could be the appetizer to a main-course deal, what with the NBA's Thursday trade deadline. It's clear that the Clippers won't move Marcus Camby or Zach Randolph. The Clippers have shown no indication they are abandoning their hard line regarding Camby.

Speaking of Camby: He won't play against Phoenix on Tuesday because of an ear ache. He'll be day-to-day. [update on Camby's condition added at 4:41 p.m.]

Chris Kaman? A week ago, I didn't think it would happen because there were simply too many questions about the willingness of other teams to assume his hefty remaining contract, given questions about his ability to stay healthy. But the needle appears to have moved.

The Clippers are getting phone calls about the injured big man. No surprise. As you might guess, the offers are hardly compelling, at least not today. But Chicago, for instance, could sweeten its offer by Wednesday or Thursday morning.

The league-wide domino is the Suns' Amare Stoudemire. Teams are waiting to see if he stays in Phoenix. If he remains put, that could boost the status of other big men (including Kaman). But it's a good bet we won't know until Thursday morning whether Kaman says auf wiedersehen to Los Angeles.

Here is the Clippers' news release:

The Los Angeles Clippers today acquired guard Alex Acker and the Detroit Pistons' second round selection in  the 2011 NBA Draft from the Pistons in exchange for a conditional second round selection in the 2013 NBA Draft. In a related move, the Clippers also waived center Cheikh Samb.

A Compton native, Acker has appeared in seven games this season for the Pistons, averaging 1.3 points and 0.1 assists in 2.9 minutes per game. A former star at Pepperdine University, Acker was originally drafted by the Pistons in the second round of the 2005 NBA Draft (60th overall) and played in five games and averaged 1.8 points during his rookie season.

Acker, 26, moved to Europe in 2006-07 and averaged 14.6 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists with the Greek team Olympiacos in Euroleague play. Acker appeared in 30 games with Spain's FC Barcelona in 2007-08, averaging 6.8 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.0 assists.

A former standout at Eisenhower High School in Rialto, Acker finished his collegiate career at Pepperdine as the 20th all-time leading scorer in school history and was named to the 2004-05 All-West Coast Conference team as a junior and named the WCC Freshman of the Year in 2002-03.

In a related move, the Clippers waived center Cheikh Samb. Samb was acquired by the Clippers on Jan. 5 in a trade with Denver and proceeded to play in 10 games with Los Angeles, averaging 1.1 points and 1.3 rebounds in 5.4 minutes.

-- Lisa Dillman

Photo: The Clippers' Chris Kaman moves the ball past the Denver Nuggets' Nene Hilario, left, and J.R. Smith during an Oct. 31, 2008, game at Staples Center.

Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times

 
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