Los Angeles Clippers
MVP: Theres a short list of players who can make a 25/13 line look as routine as a morning commute. Chris Paul is on it. While CP3 wasn’t at his best on Monday – the Clippers’ offense stagnated for long stretches against Phillys league-worst D – he was plenty good enough. North of Miami, there might not be anyone in the sport more casually dominant.
LVP: Spencer Hawes, in the midst of a career year, struggled mightily against Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan. The 25-year-old scored a season-low two points on 1-of-6 shooting and missed both of the 3-pointers he attempted, snapping at 20 his streak of games with at least one triple.
X factor: Philadelphia attempted 68 of its 92 shots from either beyond the arc or in the paint, which is intelligent and commendable. It just didn’t hit them. The Sixers were 3-of-21 from 3, missed oodles of close looks, and finished with a season-low 83 points.
– Tom Sunnergren
Keep Your Shirt On
The “Los Angeles” writing fell off DeAndre Jordan’s jersey at the start of the game. NBATV’s Tas Melas Instagrammed a video of the sequence.
Tweet(s) of the Night
Hug me like u love me to foul me Ha!
— Kimberly Jordan (@callmeMISSKIM) December 10, 2013
The Depth Charge
|Byron Mullens, C||DNP COACH’S DECISION|
|Ryan Hollins, C||6||0-0||0-0||1-2||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||1||0||1|
|Antawn Jamison, PF||10||1-4||0-2||0-0||1||5||6||0||1||0||0||2||0||2|
ClipperBlog Live’s Best Moment
Fred rambles like an insane person in a condensed, solo ClipperBlog Live.
Check Your Messages
Remodel Franchises Embrace The Overhaul
With so much uncertainty surrounding them, do Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan and Doc Rivers forge the innate understanding and trust that typically requires pressure and time? There is no smugness in the Clippers’ demeanor; they’ll take every win they can get. But for them, the regular season is about developing that telepathy, acquiring that corporate knowledge that will withstand the rigors of the postseason.
In that regard, the Clippers have largely prefabbed their renovations, slotting optimal players into a roster to create a harmonious and logical lineup. And while the Sixers are learning how to compete, Los Angeles is more intent on building its knowledge portfolio on the fly: learning how to win, learning how to win through injuries, and on a night when they shot 5-for-27 from 3-point range, learning how to win through a poor performance.
– Andrew Han for ESPN.com’s Daily Dime
A Law of Possessions
The offense did not look good tonight. Next to the Popovichian discipline of Brett Brown’s offense, the Clippers’ spacing was directionless. Doc Rivers yelled things. Chris Paul yelled things. It really wasn’t pretty.
I don’t have an answer. The most likely culprit is the absence of three wing players. Barnes and Redick are highly productive by any standard and Reggie Bullock plugs good minutes guarding swingmen. For Rivers and Paul, this clearly is not sufficient justification.
There’s a lack of consistency that can’t be blamed on injuries. Take out the third quarter, and the Sixers played the Clippers nearly even. Excluding certain moments when Paul is orchestrating the offense, the Clippers looked particularly shapeless in the first half. It resulted in a number of net extra possessions for the Sixers, allowing them to stick around until halftime
• Field-goal attempts at the half
• Free throws
LAC: 16 (including Hack-a-DJ)
• Offensive rebounds
Even accounting for the injuries, the Clippers are miles better than the Philadelphia, yet there was a legitimate scare tonight. It’s easy to make conclusions using number of possessions as a factor when it’s so axiomatically connected to the ability to score. But the statistic should hold unique weight when evaluating a game with a massive talent disparity.
– Michael Shagrin
Keep It High
One of the more frustrating parts of DeAndre Jordan’s game used to be that he would bring the ball down to his waist immediately upon getting a rebound. He didn’t always do it. But sometimes he would, and it would always be puzzling considering that’s the worst way for a center to give away his height advantage down by the hoop. It’s really the only way someone Jordan’s size can allow a 6-foot-1 point guard to swoop into the paint and swipe the ball away from him.
Now, though, Jordan never brings the ball down low. Actually, he exaggerates his keeping the ball high, doing a quick double-clutch whenever he gets a rebound. It’s almost the way a coach would tell him to rebound in practice, just so he can put an emphasis on reminding his body not to let his hands drop low. Jordan is 6-foot-11, has long arms, and can jump out of the gym. There aren’t many people who can get higher than him. And now that he keeps the ball above his shoulders on every board, he’s pulling down loads more of them.
– Fred Katz
Defensive Efficiency Update
Remember when the Clippers were at the bottom of the league in defensive efficiency at the start of the season? Well, they entered Monday night’s game against the 76ers 13th in the NBA in points allowed per 100 possessions. After allowing only 83 points in Philly, the Clips are now up to 10th, according to NBA.com. This defensive issue is solving itself quite quickly.
– Fred Katz
In a Good Position
Facing the 25th-best offense and 28th-best defense – the 76ers’ offensive and defensive ratings heading into Monday night’s game – can do wonders for a struggling ball club, so the Clippers shouldn’t pat themselves on the back just yet.
While the road trip is far from ideal so far, the Clippers can at least take solace in the fact that their next three opponents (Boston, Brooklyn, Washington) have a 25-37 combined record. With the signing of veteran swingman Stephen Jackson reportedly on the horizon, L.A.’s depleted wing crop could benefit from the additional size and 3-point shooting.
– Jovan Buha at ESPNLA