The Los Angeles Clippers ran into a speed bump in the battle of L.A. but bounced back with back to back wins over the Sacramento Kings. The Clippers are red hot winning eight of nine and are still looking to win the Pacific division. They will have to win it outright as the Lakers now hold the tie breaker. The Clippers are going to have to do it on the road as they face Memphis, Oklahoma City, and Minnesota. Last time the Clippers face a three game road trip, they lost all three games. If they want to keep within striking distance of the Lakers, the Clippers will have to win at least two of three. That possibility can easily become a reality because of way the Clippers have been playing these past nine games. Why the sudden phenomenal play from the Clippers? The answer is simple.
The Two Superstars
Both forward Blake Griffin and guard Chris Paul have been playing like the superstars that they are. Blake has been a double/double machine and CP3 is Mr. Fourth Quarter as he is accustom to being. The team will only go as far as Blake and CP3 will take them. My concern is more on Blake. I believe CP3 is automatic in big games, as for Blake the biggest factor that hinges his impact can be his free throw shooting. if the Clippers indeed make the playoffs, which I believe they will, Rake-A-Blake will be on full display.
Put this in the I-Did-Not-See-This- Coming- department, Randy Foye has been playing outstanding during the Clippers hot streak. I thought it would be inevitable that guard Nick Young would eventually become the starting shooting guard. But that has not been the case because Foye has not been willing to give up his starting job. Feels as if the trade for Young was the best thing to happen to Foye, the trade has seemingly lit a fire under him. Hopefully Foye continues his great play because the Clippers will need his three-point shooting in the playoffs.
The defense has shown improvement during this run. Early in the season the Clippers could not close out games on defense, whether if it was losing at the final buzzer or letting a team comeback for a win after a large deficit. Lately that has not been the case; the Clippers have been blowing out teams giving them no chance to comeback and in close games they have been avoiding any late game heroics from the opposite team.
The Clippers are looking awesome as the home stretch of the season is approaching. A player that needs to step his game up is center DeAndre Jordan. Jordan had no points in the Clippers latest win and only two rebounds in fourteen minutes of play. His defense has been poor as well, evident versus the Lakers when Andrew Bynum scored over thirty on him. Let’s hope he turns it around. GO CLIPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!