In the midst of their longest road trip of the season, the Los Angeles Clippers have one win in their last 10 games away from home.
A trip to New Jersey looks like a good way to solve that problem. And maybe the return of guard Eric Gordon.
He indicated Wendesday morning that he would play after missing the last three games with a sprained left big toe, the Los Angeles Times reported. Gordon had reached double figures in points in 23 straight games before he was injured against Chicago last Wednesday.
The historically woeful Nets have dropped 11 straight and are coming off their two biggest losses of a season full of defeats as they begin a four-game homestand Wednesday night against Los Angeles.
The Clippers (20-24) have already exceeded their win total from last season, but their improvement has been slowed by a 6-15 road record. They snapped an eight-game road skid with a 92-78 win over Washington on Sunday before losing 95-89 on Monday night to Boston.
While Los Angeles hung close with the Celtics in the third game of an eight-game trip, leading scorer Chris Kaman was held to 10 points on 5-of-19 shooting as the Clippers shot 38.8 percent from the field.
"We were right there," forward Marcus Camby told the NBA's official Web site. "Coach (Mike Dunleavy) just applauded our effort, especially on a back-to-back. We just came up in the loss column."
The Nets (3-40) can relate to that outcome as they remain on pace for the worst record in NBA history, and there was little reason for optimism during an 0-4 road trip, which began with a 106-95 loss to the Clippers on Jan. 18.
New Jersey's margins of defeat got progressively worse, and its 116-83 loss to Utah on Saturday night edged Friday night's 111-79 defeat to Golden State as the club's most lopsided loss of the season.
"It's just unfortunate that we're not playing with enough effort to win a basketball game or come close," coach Kiki Vandeweghe said.
Adding to New Jersey's problems was the absence of point guard Devin Harris, who sprained his right wrist against the Warriors. It's unclear if he'll play Wednesday.
Vandeweghe wasn't willing to blame Harris' injury for all the Nets' issues, which included a 70-34 Utah edge on points in the paint and a 46-31 New Jersey deficit in rebounds.
"The loss of Devin probably hurt us badly but it doesn't excuse having all the points in the paint, all the fast breaks and a lot of our turnovers," Vandeweghe said.
Among New Jersey's dubious numbers is an 0-18 record against Western Conference opponents. The Nets also lost their last 10 games against the West last season after a 114-70 victory over Denver on Feb. 7.
The Clippers will try to take advantage in the first of consecutive games against the NBA's worst teams. They visit Minnesota on Friday.
Los Angeles hopes reserve forward Craig Smith continues to contribute after averaging 14.0 points in his last seven games -- nearly twice his season average. Smith scored 18 and was 8 of 10 from the field against the Nets last week.
Kaman returned for that game after missing the previous four with a back injury and had 22 points.
"They're a very aggressive team that hurts you in the paint, and we did not meet their force with force," Vandeweghe said.
Information from STATS LLC was used in this report.