each off season There are one or two teams that get all the attention of fans and the press and quickly become a consensus favorite. it seems because of their depth roster Or he is considered a favorite because of the relevance of his name. until LA Clippers They had to take that responsibility even though they were not prepared for such a scenario. It didn’t matter. on paper they counted on the return of poet leonard, presence of Paul Georgelike a top level coach tyron lue And a supporting cast that could be headliners in another franchise.
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As usual, it was initially confirmed that they were not going to be the dominant team as everyone had thought. after defeat and Angelenos settled around 50%, It was clear that what they needed was time, time to adapt, to get to know each other and, most of all, for all the pieces to fit together. More than two months have passed since the premiere Clippers are getting closer to being that teamwill be candidates for ring what was expected the point is that they have done it again without much fanfare, without many surprises and Adding victories little by little.
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After defeating the Detroit Pistons in a complex duel 142 to 131Where they won in overtime, the Californians succeeded moved to fourth place in the Western Conference. A step forward that knocks the Suns out of the home court factor, in addition to putting them 1.5 games away from third, the Memphis Grizzlies.
While the entire conference midfield is struggling to win above 50%, the Clippers have made some margins by being consistent: They have won 6 of their last 10 matches, lost only once at home and won 2 away.
In this very positive period, Lue’s men have established themselves as the sixth best team according to advanced statistics of +3.7 net rating and being second best defense in the entire NBA (107.6), behind only the Grizzlies. In fact, the Clippers have posted the second-best defensive lineup in the competition in the above span (101.8), thanks to its perfect union. George, Morris, Leonard, Jackson and ZubacWho understand each other from behind in a wonderful way.
The gift that keeps on giving
— LA Clippers (@LAClippers) December 27, 2022
The intermediate zone is where the Californians have had their best defensive performance, being one of the teams that best defends the paint and mid-range. All this without being distracted from its work by a row of three both frontally and in the corners.
In this silent rising, good offensive work of Paul Georgewhich is average 24.4 points on 36.8% in triplesbut as their contribution creator (6.9 help) Which is the most noticeable. In a team like this where there is so much presence in the forwards that someone like PG has made a move in that area, it means a lot. In fact, it’s not surprising that the third-highest assist in these last 10 games has been Kawhi Leonard, who is making positive strides.
George has been the leader of the team for some time now. Very different from the figure we have seen under the direction of Doc Rivers and one who now manages to make a very positive impact on the Clippers in various ways.
Despite this, make no mistake, the Clippers have a long way to go. Kawhi Leonard is on the right track, but he is far from meeting the needs of the group. The Angelenos’ offense is still very low (29th overall). And Wall and Jackson’s direction is very erratic. The important thing is to stay in the high zone, avoid unnecessary problems and tensions and everyone reaches the right position. april,
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