The Clippers faced the Mavericks in the first round of the Las Vegas Summer League playoffs Wednesday night in a loser goes…back to the hotel because it plays a game Friday matchup. Unfortunately, the Clips came out losers in a high-scoring affair. That means the Clippers have one final game in Vegas, a 1:00 p.m. PST matchup against the Knicks on Friday. Now, onto Last Call:
Recap | Box score
Los Angeles Clippers
Tweet(s) of the Game
Any reason Jerome Randle couldn’t have a JJ Barea type impact off a team’s bench? #LACSummer
— Eric Patten (@EricPatten) July 18, 2013
Check Your Messages
The Idea of Byron
Is Byron Mullens a stretch 4 or is the idea of Byron Mullens a stretch 4? The idea of Mullens is a stretch 4, someone that can step outside and improve the Clippers’ floor spacing. But actual Byron Mullens doesn’t seem to make those jumpers all too often. In reality, Mullens does take his fair share of jump shots. 36.9 percent of his shot attempts last year were three pointers and 71.2 percent of his shots came least 10 feet from the rim. That screams stretch. But those shots don’t always find the hole.
Mullens hit less than a third of his shot attempts from beyond 16 feet last year and doesn’t play much defense on the other side of the floor, but even with all that said, he might be worth the risk for the Clippers. Sitting on a minimum deal, he could hardly hurt the Clippers financially. Meanwhile, it wasn’t that long ago when Byron was going by B.J. and was ranked as the No. 1 high school recruit in the entire country by Rivals.com. He’s still only 24 years old and has been rotting away on a bad team for the past two seasons. If Doc Rivers can help eliminate his bad shots, maybe he can improve into the type of player that can help the Clips as a fourth big off the bench.
- Fred Katz
“Near a Deal”
This isn’t reporting so much as it is just quixotic. Yahoo Sports tweeted early during the Mavs v. Clippers game that the team was approaching a deal with Byron Mullens on a two year deal. Fascinating news on its own account except for the curious fact that both Gary Sacks and Andy Roeser were seated courtside at the summer league game with owner Donald Sterling.
So if the Clippers are nearing a deal with Mullens, and it’s being reported as in progress and near, who’s doing the dealings with the Vice-President of Basketball Operations and the President of the team watching the game? More likely, negotiations are constantly in motion and ongoing. But it’s humorous to see news being broken real time with one side of the party clearly not immediately engaged in said news.
- Andrew Han
Hope Springs Ephemeral
Byron Mullens is stalking me. I’m sure of it. As a side to writing about the Clippers, watching inordinate and unseemly amounts of television and sleeping, I also write for a Bobcats blog. Of course, writing about the second-worst team in the NBA is a voluntary decision, so it doesn’t exactly make sense to complain about how bad some of the players are. Here’s the thing, though. Byron Mullens isn’t just bad. He’s the worst.
He’s the prototypical tall guy that gets labelled as a high-potential player by virtue of being a tall guy that’s good at a few other things. And that’s fine. As fans and reporters alike, sometimes we take on a second occupation as dreamers. The problem with Mullens isn’t that he didn’t live up to expectations. It’s that he took those expectations, threw them out of a 10-story building, ran them over with a semi-truck a couple of times and then proceeded to shoot contested mid-range jumpers and three-pointers all over them — early in the shot clock too, I might add.
Anyway, after hate-watching Mullens take minutes away from younger prospects for an entire season, the only thing that kept me going was the fact that I could feasibly avoid watching him play for the rest of my life. LAC, you’ve shattered my hope.
- Seerat Sohi