Los Angeles Clippers
Tweet(s) Of The Game
— Los Angeles Clippers (@LAClippers) March 23, 2014
For he is a national treasure. RT @Tom_NBA: I can't get over how good Blake Griffin is this season.
— Kelly Dwyer (@KDonhoops) March 23, 2014
Clippers vs Knicks in the finals this year!!!
— Metta World Peace (@MettaWorldPeace) March 23, 2014
The Depth Charge
|Ryan Hollins, C||DNP COACH’S DECISION|
|Hedo Turkoglu, PF||11||1-2||0-1||0-0||0||1||1||0||0||1||0||2||-14||2|
|Big Baby, PF||15||0-0||0-0||0-0||0||1||1||0||0||1||2||2||-14||0|
ClipperBlog Live’s Best Moment
No show tonight. Instead, enjoy Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis smooching with full finger guns in effect.
Check Your Messages
Good thing the Clippers starters are heavy hitters. Because the bench, quite frankly, has been underwhelming.
J.J. Hickson ran circles around Glen Davis in the Clippers’ loss to Denver Monday night. Tonight wasn’t so much about Big Baby, so much as several things the bench needs to clean up:
a) Letting backup big men get lifted. The Clippers are going to make Jonas Jerebko want to opt out. The Pistons got a season-high 22 points out of Jerebko tonight, featuring five threes. It’s curious the Pistons have not given him minutes all year when NONE of their bigs can shoot. Even curioser, the Clippers let Jerebko score his most points in two years.
b) Blown leads. Lately, every game is the same. Clippers go up, bench loses the lead by half. Clippers come out of half with the lasers, bench causes Doc Rivers to call a timeout within five minutes in the fourth. Defense is an issue, as is athleticism in general, when Davis, Hedo Turkoglu and Danny Granger are on the floor.
c) Offensive inefficiency. The Clippers got 25 points on 24 shots from their bench tonight. That’s the definition of hit-or-miss.
The Clippers have exciting parts on the floor and on the bench. But they have less than a month to tighten up some obvious loose ends.
- Law Murray
Two Aspects of Stardom
I wouldn’t say it’s an underrated part of being an NBA superstar, but you know you’ve made it when you start cruising against bad teams. Bench players or quality starters can’t take whole quarters off. Even dispirited Pistons are some of the best athletes in the world; most people have to be completely focused against guys like that. But through the first half tonight, Griffin was uncharacteristically sluggish. It didn’t matter much to begin with; the Clips were well up when he left the game. But the second quarter was a disaster. The Clippers’ shots stopped falling, while the bad rotations and lack of effort continued.
But by the end the third, Griffin had 25 points on 75 percent shooting; he’d made at least one Ray Allen-esque jumper off a curl so tight it’s hard to believe a man that big could make the turn, let alone the shot. And this time he paired it with fast close-outs, good rotations and his usual hustle. The rest of the team followed his example, and the lead got as high as 16. Taking halves off might be one mark of a star. But turning it on for a quarter, with that much effect, is a much more crowd-pleasing one.
- J.D. Evans
With All Due Respect
I can’t tell if it’s personal enmity or just a distaste for his counterpart’s game, but Chris Paul does not think much of Brandon Jennings. Even against the high standards of the imperiousness-bordering-on-haughtiness with which Paul approaches most of the point guards in the league, this level of open disdain stood out. And not just in Paul’s gaudy stat-line.
No, it was the style in which Paul played. He’s certainly capable of the “Uncle Drew” level flashiness of Kyrie Irving, but rarely does he bring it out in the half court while a game is still in the balance and not demanded by the exigencies of the moment. On this night, however, Paul started going into an almost high-stepping trot, resembling a Deion Sanders touchdown celebration, coming around screens starting almost from tip off. It just could be that I’m projecting my dislike of Jennings onto the proceedings, but Paul was dismissive of the notion that Jennings could impede the Clippers in any way. And he wanted Jennings to know he felt that way.
Perhaps there was a long-held grudge from a summer pickup game, or maybe Paul gave himself the personal challenge of dismantling Jennings as a way to provide motivation in a late season game against a team very much playing out the string. Or he just decided to put a little extra mustard on the hot dog because tonight he could, and their was nothing Brandon Jennings or any other Piston could do about it.
- Seth Partnow