Sindarius Thornwell’s playing time might be down during his second NBA season, but his coach’s confidence in him isn’t.

Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers wasn’t afraid to put the former South Carolina basketball great in with 4.3 seconds left and the game on the line Tuesday against the Charlotte Hornets. Thornwell rewarded Rivers’ belief in him by denying Hornets’ All-Star Kemba Walker the ball and forcing Marvin Williams to take the final shot.

Williams missed and the Clippers won 117-115. Los Angeles trailed by as many as 20 points in the third quarter.

“I have confidence in putting him in any point in the game,” Rivers said. “What I like about Sindarius the most is he will go five or six games without playing and he is always ready.”

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