Steve Nash not likely to face Clips

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Los Angeles Lakers point guard Steve Nash will likely miss his third consecutive game Sunday against the Los Angeles Clippers because of a hip injury.

"I don't think he's going to go," Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni said after the Lakers' practice Saturday afternoon. "We're shooting for Tuesday, hopefully."

Steve Blake will again start at point guard. Blake is averaging 10.6 points and 3.6 rebounds in his past three games while shooting 47.8 percent from the field and 50 percent from 3-point range. Blake, however, is also averaging 4.5 turnovers in his last two starts.

Los Angeles leads Utah by one half-game for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West with seven games remaining.

Nash experienced discomfort in his right hip after the Lakers' loss to the Golden State Warriors on March 25, and has since been dealing with the strained hip and a strained right hamstring.

Nash was able to play in the Lakers' game against Minnesota on March 27, but then missed most of the second half against Milwaukee, played just two minutes against Sacramento and sat out the entire game against Dallas.

"It's serious because he's not playing," D'Antoni said when asking about the severity of the injury. "Hopefully not too serious. He'll probably try tomorrow morning, but since he hasn't (practiced), I think he's very doubtful (to play Sunday)."

The Lakers got some good news on the injury front Saturday as Metta World Peace was in his practice gear and shot around with the team. He had tweeted yesterday: "My first day of running went excellent."

World Peace had been expected to be out six weeks after having surgery last week for a torn meniscus in his left knee. After watching World Peace shoot and run on the Anti-Gravity Treadmill Saturday, D'Antoni said that timetable has changed.

"He was shooting, he's progressing really well," D'Antoni said. "It's now 4-6 weeks. We're making progress now. He's a little different. He's good. He's unbelievable."