When the news of Andrew Bogut‘s injury arose, one person was likely salivating at the endless opportunities he’d see in the opening playoff series: DeAndre Jordan.
Without Bogut, the Warriors will struggle defending the rim. Jermaine O’Neal has done well in the category, allowing opponents to shoot 47.9% at the rim according to the NBA’s player-tracking system, but that won’t be enough. He lacks the intimidation factor that Bogut brings to the Warriors as you’ll be hard-pressed to find many players that will be afraid to enter the paint because of 35-year-old Jermaine O’Neal. Those days are long gone. The alternatives, David Lee and Marreese Speights, come up short in that category also.
But another area that the Clippers and DeAndre Jordan can dominate in with Bogut sidelined is rebounding. Jordan led the league in rebounding at 13.6 per contest and against the Warriors when Bogut wasn’t on the floor, he absolutely killed.
Per NBA Stats, DeAndre Jordan posted a rebound percentage of 21.5. Only Andre Drummond of the Detroit Pistons posted a higher percentage. But against the Warriors, that number jumped to 27.5% when Andrew Bogut was off the floor. Jordan’s percentage with Bogut benched would be the second highest number in league history behind Dennis Rodman‘s astounding 29.73% posted in 1994-95.
The real impact will come on the offensive side of the ball. In a series where offense will be aplenty, DeAndre Jordan’s offensive rebounding numbers jump incredulously. When Bogut is on the floor, Jordan’s offensive rebound percentage is 12.9%, but when off, that number jumps to 21.1%. That’d be the highest percentage in league history. These chances allow the best offensive an extra opportunity to produce points and that could become lethal throughout the series.
Overall, offensive rebounds, or the lack of, wasn’t a thorn in the Warriors side, posting a record of 23-18 when the opposing team out rebounded them, but against the Clippers it was an evident factor. Splitting the season series 2-2, each victor won the battle of the offensive rebounds:
Game 1: Clippers win, Clippers +6 OREBS
Game 2: Warriors win, Warriors +10 OREBS
Game 3: Warriors win, Warriors +8 OREBS
Game 4: Clippers win, Clippers +5 OREBS
Without Bogut, the Warriors lose a lot of size that can combat DeAndre Jordan’s athleticism. When being boxed out by someone your size, an attempt to jump over their back to retrieve the rebound often results in a foul. Golden State loses tis luxury. Combining Bogut’s size with his wingspan and athleticism allows him to neutralize Jordan. In the 106 minutes the two played on the court together, Jordan grabbed a total of 12 offensive rebounds, 10 of those coming in first game between the two. Subtracting Jordan’s minutes in the first game of the series from the combined total and you see that in the other 65 minutes, Jordan only grabbed two offensive rebounds. In the other 47 minutes against the Warriors without Bogut, Jordan grabbed a total of 8 offensive rebounds.
Look at DeAndre Jordan’s position in this image when the shot goes up on offense:
After each shot is put up, David Lee or whoever was near the basket were in the right position to box out Jordan. Unfortunately they lacked the size and Jordan leaped right over them to grab the board. A healthy Bogut changes everything.
Like in the previous two GIF’s, Jordan was properly boxed out, but Bogut’s body kept Jordan contained.
It’s safe to say that it’s going to be a long series for the Warriors when it comes to competing on the glass. Seth Partnow of Clipperblog said he wouldn’t be surprised if DeAndre Jordan averaged close to 20 rebounds per game. After reviewing the tape, I agree with him. Blake Griffin and Chris Paul will get the bulk of the love if/when the Clippers advance to the second round, but there’s a chance Jordan could well be the series MVP.