The Clippers are a great basketball team with a lot of talent. With the future of Chris Paul uncertain in LA, they’re worried about having another winning season, but they shouldn’t be. They may have a lot of veterans on the roster, but it’s good to have the experience. Eric Bledsoe is a great backup point guard and the Clippers have enough depth to get it done without Paul, who is likely to re-sign. Still, the last two season have been saddened by early playoff exits in the first and early second round. It’s not that the Clippers are bad, but there’s a couple things keeping them back.
They may be missing the leadership of Paul when he faces injury, but they look to Bledsoe to be at the helm during games. It may a bit hard for him, however, as he is still young himself and incapable of producing the highlight plays like Paul, and averaging over 9 assists per game. There’s many problems that cannot be fixed, but some are just small. Here are the big ones.
Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and DeAndre Jordan, three core players of the Clippers are very young and inexperienced. Jamal Crawford is older, yes, but he hasn’t been a contender, ever, so that may hurt the Clippers a little bit. They could easily have a successful offseason, but right now, there’s no need or urgency to make an rash decisions like trading any core players away. These guys will become more and more mature, and learn how to play in the postseason. Did anybody see LeBron James’ first finals compared to his last?
2. Possibly Coaching?
Many hate it when I say that the Clippers need a coaching change, but they do. Vinny Del Negro is a great coach, but before Paul came to town, his Clippers were almost as helpless as the Bobcats, now. Del Negro has seemingly been able to manage his team in the regular season well, but come playoff time, the coaching is almost all that matters. Del Negro just can’t seem to make those adjustments that makes or breaks a playoff series. When the Clippers beat the Grizzlies last year, they were focused on the intensity.
Half of the battle is just having desire. All these guys are the NBA for a reason, because they can play basketball. The Clippers have a lot of talent for a young team, but sometimes flashy dunks and the old razzle-dazzle don’t work. Like the Spurs, the Clippers need to be more grounded, trying to make the right play instead of ALWAYS going for the crowd-pleasing plays. Of course they’re capable of doing this, but they need some nudge from desire, which hasn’t seemed to hit them yet. Sure, it’s all fun and games, but what happens when you’re considered one of the NBA’s greatest, and you’ve never won a championship? The Clippers lost a 2-0 series lead to the Grizzlies. They need to play every possession like it’s their last!