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Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Sources: Clippers closing in on deal with Matt Barnes

By Ramona Shelburne

The Los Angeles Clippers are closing in on a deal with free-agent forward Matt Barnes and could complete the deal by the end of the week, sources told ESPNLosAngeles.com.

Barnes, 32, averaged 7.8 points and 5.5 rebounds for the Los Angeles Lakers last season in the final season of a two-year deal, but was never fully healthy during his time with Staples Center's co-tenants. Barnes had knee surgery in the middle of the 2011 season, then suffered an ankle injury midway through the 2012 season and a freak neck injury playing with his children at the end of the season that affected his performance.

Signing Barnes would cap a productive summer for the Clippers who added veterans Jamal Crawford, Grant Hill, Ronny Turiaf and Ryan Hollins through free agency, re-signed Chauncey Billups and agreed to a contract extension with Blake Griffin.

Billups, Griffin, and point guard Chris Paul were all involved in recruiting Barnes, who had interest from the Miami Heat, among others.