Los Angeles Clippers guard Chauncey Billups practiced Monday and is expected to start Tuesday against the Portland Trail Blazers.

Clippers forward Caron Butler, who was sidelined for much of Saturday's game against the Memphis Grizzlies with a sore right knee, didn't practice Monday but is expected to start Tuesday.

Billups is officially listed as a game-time decision but said he is optimistic he will play after missing the past eight games with a right groin strain.

"I feel good," Billups said. "I practiced and the whole thing. The last three days I've been doing everything that the team is doing and practicing and the whole thing. Barring anything crazy I expect to be out there."

The Clippers have been more cautious with Billups' return after feeling they may have played him too quickly after he missed three games with the same groin injury and re-aggravated it while playing 13 minutes against the New Orleans Hornets on March 27.

Billups initially suffered the injury early in a game against the Sacramento Kings on March 19 and was taken out after playing just seven minutes.

"The last time, as soon as I felt good I went back out there because I wanted to help the guys on this push we're making," Billups said. "It probably wasn't the smartest decision so I learned from that and feel better about my decision-making this time."