Los Angeles Clippers
No Dime tonight.
Tweet(s) of the Night
.@CP3 is the ONLY player since 2009 to score 38+ pts with 12+ asts & 3+ stls. He's done it twice this season.
— Los Angeles Clippers (@LAClippers) December 15, 2013
— Chris Paul (@CP3) December 15, 2013
The Depth Charge
|Byron Mullens, C||3||0-1||0-1||0-0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||-7||0|
|Ryan Hollins, C||5||0-0||0-0||0-0||0||2||2||0||0||0||0||1||-7||0|
|Antawn Jamison, PF||13||2-5||1-2||0-0||0||2||2||0||0||0||0||1||-2||5|
ClipperBlog Live’s Best Moment
Luke Laubhan’s debut! Andrew and Luke ponder whether this marks the end of the Clippers’ horrific shooting slump and who would they rather have: John Wall or Eric Bledsoe?
Check Your Messages
It’s Not Just About the Starters
The Clippers made a somewhat surprising change today: moving Jamal Crawford into the starting lineup in place of Willie Green. But maybe just as important of a move is placing Green into Crawford’s role, because Green’s presence shook up the way the second unit played.
With Crawford out, the second unit essentially played a motion offense. We haven’t seen that much this season, and part of that might have to do with Crawford’s iso-heavy game moving into the starting lineup. And even with its leading scorer leaving the reserves, the second unit managed to play pretty well.
After the game, Jared Dudley said running the motion offense in Crawford’s absence wasn’t much of a coincidence. We’ll probably see a lot more pick-and-roll in the future, more off-ball movement. Doc Rivers said one of the reasons he moved Crawford to the first unit was because Collison, a score-first guard, might work better with Green. Maybe this was exactly what he had in mind.
– Fred Katz
Everything In Its Right Place
Jamal Crawford in the starting lineup, Willie Green relegated to bench status. The two-headed monster of Hollins/Mullens on the floor for just seven minutes, all of which were in the throwaway fourth quarter. Doc Rivers does not shy away from tinkering with his rotation. For a team with such heady aspirations and endless lineup possibilities, it makes sense. For one night in this injury-laden stretch, Rivers found the perfect balance, striking the pendulum back to the Clippers’ side.
A concerted effort to get Jared Dudley going in the first quarter—on his favourite side of the court, no less— was reminiscent of Redick’s first quarter prowess. Not a moment of quarters one through three were spent without either DJ or Griffin on the floor, holding the regular bench ineptitude at bay and allowing L.A. to build a steady lead throughout the first half. Chris Paul was stellar; astronomical, even. More accurately, he was vintage.
Tonight’s game was a welcome deviation from the inconsistent play and uncertainty that plagued this road trip; an essential performance to get the Clippers back on track as they head home.
– Seerat Sohi
Tonight, the 113 points on 56.5 percent shooting came directly after a nine-game stretch in which the team ranked in the league’s bottom third in terms of offensive efficiency.
Against the Wizards, Paul came out aggressive, taking and making two 3-pointers in the game’s opening minutes and staying active throughout. The pace was also much quicker than we’ve seen in recent games, the ball zipping around from to player to player. And while Rivers’ decision to insert Crawford’s speed and energy into the starting lineup helped Dudley regain his swagger, against better teams – Washington came in depleted by injury – the sixth-man extraordinaire’s second unit absence could really hurt.
– Aaron Fischman
Same Stuff, Different Day for DJ
On a night when the outcome was not often in doubt, the only real push made by the Wizards came at DeAndre Jordan’s expense. Los Angeles held a 22-point lead with 3:30 left in the third quarter – the game felt over – when Washington elected to start fouling DeAndre off the ball. The result: three consecutive L.A. possessions ended with DJ going 1-2 from the foul line, the Clippers’ offense went off the rails, and the lead dropped to 12 points. Doc subbed out his floundering big man with 1:54 left. It was a bad 90 seconds.
Then, with eight minutes left in the fourth quarter and order seemingly restored, Doc reinserted DeAndre only to watch the Wizards intentionally foul him two straight times. Like that, DJ was back on the bench for the rest of the night. Consider it a lesson-learned, or perhaps a failed experiment, for the coach entrusted to solve the riddle of deploying DeAndre Jordan. It’s December, it’s the Wizards, and it was a 16-point win; the stakes here were low. In a few months, though, Los Angeles will need a better solution to this perpetual problem. Good luck, Doc.
– Luke Laubhan
Not what you want, but what you need
While Clippers coach Doc Rivers disagreed with the notion that the game was a must-win at shootaround, he admitted that going 3-4 against mainly sub-.500 Eastern Conference teams would be a major disappointment at any point in the season.
“I think they’re a little frustrated on this trip,” Rivers told reporters. “They think it should have gone better. It still can go well. If you win this game, 4-3 on a seven-game trip — that’s good. It’s not what we wanted. We want to win all seven of them. But you just keep plugging along.”
With the win, the Clippers finished the trip above .500 at 4-3 and are now 16-9. That isn’t necessarily where they expected to be at this point in the season, but at the very least Saturday’s win showed that if they need to win a tough road game to ease their mental psyche, they can.
– Jovan Buha, at ESPNLA
Washington Wizards: Slump Busters
Clippers’ shooting since Redick’s injury prior to tonight (7 games):
42.1% Field-goal percentage
27.4% 3-Point percentage
70.5% Free-throw percentage
Clippers’ shooting tonight versus the Wizards:
56.5% Field-goal percentage
42.9% 3-Point percentage
83.9% Free-throw percentage
Los Angeles is a miraculous .500 (4-4) in the eight games Redick has been out. Not sure a lot more can be expected than for the team to tread water until at least some of the injured players return.
– Andrew Han