Los Angeles Clippers
MVP: Brook Lopez. The Clippers didn’t know what to do with Lopez. DeAndre Jordan couldn’t man him. Guarding him with Griffin didn’t work. Double teams didn’t work. And the NBA’s most skilled post scorer made the Clippers pay.
Defining moment: With Andray Blatche at the line for the Nets in the fourth quarter, a few Brooklyn fans started the “MVP!” chant. Even Blatche was an MVP on a night when everything went the Nets’ way.
Well that was…uncharacteristic: The story of the game may have come in the third quarter when the Nets, who struggle in the third as much as any other team in the league, outscored the Clippers, one of the NBA’s best third-quarter teams, 27-18 to put the game away.
Tweet(s) of the Night
Kevin Garnett: Basketball Troll
— Kevin Arnovitz (@kevinarnovitz) December 13, 2013
Someone to my right yelled "Oooh! Kill 'em!" and Andray Blatche nailed a stepback junkshot. Perfect.
— Beckley Mason (@BeckleyMason) December 13, 2013
The Depth Charge
|Byron Mullens, C||6||0-0||0-0||0-0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||+10||0|
|Ryan Hollins, C||11||2-3||0-0||3-3||2||2||4||0||0||0||0||1||+9||7|
|Antawn Jamison, PF||12||3-7||0-3||0-1||0||2||2||0||0||0||0||1||-8||6|
ClipperBlog Live’s Best Moment
Andrew and Seerat get spooked by the bench, start to wonder if “momentum” is a thing they have to believe in because the Clippers lose it so often in games. Also, Seerat claims to have lived in the coldest place on the planet today.
Check Your Messages
Basketball Makes No Sense
Coming into Thursday night, the Nets were one of the worst third-quarter teams in the NBA, with opponents outscoring them by 16 points per 100 possessions in the third frame of games this season. Conversely, the Clippers were dominant in third periods, outscoring opponents by 13.6 points per 100 possessions. So naturally, the Nets won Thursday night’s third quarter 27-18 and took away any hope the Clippers may have had for a comeback.
– Fred Katz
J.J. Redick is more than just a great shooter. His zippy off-screen ball movement borders on clairvoyant; a faction of the offense the Clippers dearly miss. He’s a shrewd and intelligent perimeter defender, easing the back line pressure on Griffin and DJ. And… he’s also a really, really great shooter who opens the floor up for everyone else. Since Redick’s absence, the Clippers have shot 32.7 percent from beyond the arc.
This leads us to the larger problem. The Clippers are far too reliant on the three-point shot: They’re shooting 36 percent from beyond the arc in wins and a putrid 26 percent in losses. It took the Clippers just four attempts to nail their first three treys tonight, but another 20 to hit their next three. They finished the game shooting 25 percent.
The Clippers will miss Redick, as they have for weeks, but it would be shrewd to treat this as a blessing in disguise, an opportunity to develop wrinkles in their offenses that never would have come to fruition without a few hiccups from downtown. The Clippers would be better, and more flexible, for it.
– Seerat Sohi
Sisyphus Crushed By the Rock
The Clippers had a comfortable 25-14 lead with 1:35 remaining in the first period. Shortly after, most of the second unit entered for the starters and the Nets rolled on a 19-4 run, bridging quarters and never relinquishing the lead again.
This is not something new aand shiny to this game; the dropoff has been pungent all season from starters to bench. And while momentum is generally a concept we project into the game, our way of making order out of the beautiful chaos, it has me wondering if it’s a bonafide thing at this point. Plain and simple: the starters struggle to reignite the engine after their inter-quarter rest. Is it possible the mental fatigue accumulates watching the bench squander any lead?
It’s like they’re Sisyphus watching the boulder roll back on them. How disheartening is that?
– Andrew Han