“Didn’t Get Much Time Together”: LA Clippers Pull Out Excuses Following Embarrassing Loss Against Nuggets

Published 09/16/2020, 2:10 AM EDT
LA Clippers head coach Doc Rivers talks with center Ivica Zubac (40) during the second half of game three of the second round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs against the Denver Nuggets at AdventHealth Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports


The LA Clippers are on their way home. After going 3-1 up in the series, they suffered a catastrophic collapse and let the Nuggets win 4-3. It was an awful shooting night for the whole team, as they managed only 89 points all night and lost by 15 points.

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During the post-game press conference, both Paul George and Doc Rivers had a few excuses for the defeat. George sais, “We dealt with a lot of adversity. Guys had to go home for rightful reasons. We just missed a lot of time being together. With injuries in the regular season and inside the bubble. We didn’t get much time to be together. …I think internally, we’ve always felt this is not a championship or bust year for us. We can only get better the longer we stay together.”

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Coach Rivers also had similar things to say.

What went wrong for the LA Clippers?

In their biggest game of the season, their star players disappeared. Kawhi Leonard shot 6/22 from the field at an atrocious 27% from the field, finishing with just 14 points. What made it worse was that in the final quarter, when they were behind and needed the most help, Leonard went 0/5.

Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard (2) handles the ball in front of Denver Nuggets guard Monte Morris (11) and forward Torrey Craig (3) during the first half in game seven of the second round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

George had a similar performance. He shot 4/16 from the field, shooting 22% from the field. He kept chucking threes despite clearly struggling, as he went 2/11 from deep. Like Kawhi, he was invisible in the fourth quarter, shooting 0/6 from the field.

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Los Angeles Clippers guard Paul George (13) handles the ball while Denver Nuggets guard Gary Harris (14) defends during the second half in game seven of the second round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Clippers had a lead of 12 points at the start, but then as seen throughout the series, they choked. The Nuggets made the most out of their misery and kept piling on the points at the other end. Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray were the best players on the court, and they helped the Nuggets to achieve their comeback.

Sep 15, 2020; Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA; Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) celebrates after defeating the Los Angeles Clippers in game seven of the second round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The supposed title favorite Clippers only have themselves to blame and should have breezed past the opposition with the talent they possess. Since they were formed in 1970, the Clippers have now gone half a century without going past the Conference Semifinals.

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Aaron Mathew

1532 articles

Aaron Mathew is a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Mass Media from Xavier’s College, Aaron has been a part of EssentiallySports since May 2020 where he covers both NBA and NCAA basketball news, and has also covered NBA 2K. In the past, Aaron has worked at the Sports Desk of Mumbai Mirror.

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