Los Angeles Clippers: Season Preview

Published 10/10/2017, 12:47 PM EDT


Los Angeles Clippers 2016-17 record: 51-31 (4 in Western Conference)

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Additions: Sindarius Thornwell (Draft day trade),  Jawun Evans (Draft day trade), Patrick Beverly (Trade), Lou Williams (Trade), Sam Dekker (Trade), Montrezel Harrell (Trade), Darrun Hillard (Trade), DeAndre Liggins (Trade), Kyle Wiltjer (Trade), Danilo Gallinari (Trade), Blake Griffin (Free Agency: re-signed), Milos Teodosic (Free Agency), Jamil Wilson (Free Agency), Willie Reed (Free Agency)

Subtractions: Chris Paul (Trade), Jamal Crawford (Trade), Diamond Stone (Trade), Paul Pierce (Waivers), Darrun Hillard (Waivers), J.J. Reddick (Free Agency), Kyle Wiltjer (Waivers), Raymond Felton (Free Agency), Luc Mbah a Moute (Free Agency),  Mareese Speights (Free Agency), Brandon Bass (Free Agency), DeAndre Liggins (Trade)

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Chris Paul will still be a big loss for the Clippers.

The Big-3 lob city era at the Clippers is over. Trading away Chris Paul, the franchise is heading in a new direction. Gutting their key bench players and star point guard, The Clippers are going to operate differently. The new look Clippers will want to break their playoff luck.

Clippers New Faces

With no draft, the Clippers bought their 2 picks for cash consideration. Jawun Evans, in two college seasons, showed himself a talented scoring point guard. This can be a great future prospect for the team. Sindarius Thornwell, completing 4 years at South Carolina lead the team to the NCAA final four in 2017. The best finish for the university. He also averaged over 20 points a game in his last year at college.

A lot was acquired trading Chris Paul to Houston. Beverly, Williams and Dekker will see key roles. Beverly is a defensive guard, and can provide decent all-round play. What he lacks in offensive play, he compensates for his defense and hustle. Lou Williams has been an impact bench player. The last 3 seasons saw him average 15 points a game from the bench. This can compensate for the loss of key bench players. Sam Dekker can see an expanded bench role to last season. Gallinari has proven to be a good scoring threat, when healthy. His health is a big question, but the performance is undeniable.

Milos, an experienced euro-league player finally makes his NBA debut.

In Free Agency, Milos Teodosic was the biggest find. The experienced Serb is considered the best player in the world yet to play in the NBA. With averages of 16 points and 5 assists a game over the last couple of seasons, Milos can start filling the hole left by Paul.

The Bad

The Clippers have gutted their bench and starting back court. Paul, Reddick, Luc Mbah a Moute were great defensive assets. On top of that, Reddick along with Crawford added good 3-point range. Paul and Reddick averaged around 35 points together on a given night.

Redick was underrated in his utility at LAC.

The second unit while having valuable acquisitions in Lou Williams and Dekker, its hard to see if the team can still maintain a strong defensive presence.

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Verdict

The Clippers direction have changed. They retained Griffin, who is now the face of the franchise. Paul, Reddick, Crawford, Mbah a Moute, Speights have left big holes in the franchise. However, additions of Teodosic, Gallinari, Williams and Beverly should help fill it.

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The Clippers will still be the better team of LA this season. They certainly are not one of the top teams in the Western Conference, but it would be shocking to not see them in the playoffs.

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Gaurav

372 articles

Sports is such an amazing passion. A content writer of NBA

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