I know David Lee thinks that there are no moral victories in the NBA, but at least what we saw tonight approximated basketball. It wasn't successful basketball, but there was a modicum of coherence, and the Clippers played hard.
We also saw the most complete Clipper possession of the year:
[2nd, 7:15] Ewing brings the ball up. He swings it to Thomas out on the right wing above the arc. Mobley has position on Barry via a very nice there-and-back cut along the baseline. TT drops it into Cat there. Cat turns baseline and sets himself to elevate for the layup, but as he goes up, Duncan has closed. While he's in midair, Cat sees that Bowen has left Maggette to come down low on the play. Cat kicks it out to Maggette, on whom Parker closes quickly. Maggette swings it at the top of the arc to Ewing who, with Horry closing, passes it off right back to Thomas. Thomas fires a 3PA before Barry closes and hits it.
Does having all five guys touch the ball offer any empirical advantage in a possession? Maybe not. And I realize that offenses like Phoenix, Dallas, and Washington do this kind of thing every single night. But I'd forgotten that the Clippers used to do stuff like this more frequently than every twenty games.
The defense leaked like a sieve once Parker found his way inside on penetration, but the Clippers looked pretty good defensively in the halfcourt. Offensively, they were able to establish both Kaman and Brand inside, as well as Brand on the side screen in the first half. Kaman came this close to having a stellar offensive game, if he had just finished a couple more times. The shots were there, and the footwork and the decisions were virtually flawless, save one awkward drive that actually resulted in a make. Corey didn't get to the line, but he played a measured game offensively. All in all, the Clippers probably beat a majority of teams in the league with the way they played tonight.
Can you order something like this from Elias? Leaguewide offensive efficiency in possessions during which all five offensive players touch the ball.