Over at ESPNLA.com, I broke down what the Clippers pick-and-roll attack might look like with Doc Rivers in town. You can read the full post here.
The resounding complaint about the Los Angeles Clippers offense under former head coach Vinny Del Negro was that it lacked creativity and structure. The Clippers kept things simple for the most part, relying on their talent to make the most out of very vanilla offensive sets.
Maybe it wasn’t aesthetically pleasing or overly difficult for defenses to figure out, but the isolated results were still impressive.
The Clippers ranked fourth in offensive efficiency each of the last two seasons, and according to mysynergysports.com, they were second in the league in points per possessions (PPP) used by pick-and-roll ballhandlers, and third in the league for the roll men in the pick-and-roll.
The general effectiveness of the Clippers pick-and-roll attack shouldn’t be questioned, but it’s fair to ask if it was optimal given the talent level of the primary participants.
In Boston, Rivers liked to run plays with very specific conclusions – this player, taking this shot, from this spot on the floor. To arrive at that point, the Celtics would run a lot of misdirection and a ton of off-ball screens, especially when Ray Allen was still around.
If the desired look wasn’t manufactured, the pick-and-roll was often the secondary, late shot clock option. Rondo was allowed to create in early transition opportunities or when a bailout was required, but the rest of the game belonged to Rivers.
If the Clippers’ offense more closely resembles what Rivers did in Boston, you’ll see less static pick-and-rolls and more fluidity in that setting. At least in theory, that means the ball will be out Paul’s hands early in the clock with much more frequency.
Is a possible dip in efficiency during an adjustment period worth it for more variety and less predictability in the postseason?
Read how the Clippers can improve their current pick-and-roll play and the rest of the post here.