The LA Clippers are on the verge of mediocrity again

CHICAGO, IL - MARCH 04: Blake Griffin
CHICAGO, IL - MARCH 04: Blake Griffin /

Will the post-Chris Paul era find the LA Clippers competing for the title or will the curse show up once more?

One thing is certain, Chris Paul has left the building.

Truth be told, there were not much Doc Rivers could have done to keep the dismayed Paul in Los Angeles. He was an unrestricted free agent and the Clippers did well to get quality rotation players in return for his sign-and-trade.

Let’s break down the roster, piece by piece and see where that takes us

Patrick Beverley and Austin RIvers will probably start at the guard spots. Beverley will provide his A-class defense and his improved shooting while Rivers is showing signs of actually belonging in the NBA.

Coming from the bench as key reserves will be Lou Williams and Milos Teodosic. “Sweet Lou” will once again be a candidate for the 6th man award and Teodosic will be a starter by Christmas. We told you already, he is that good.

Are these guys better than Chris Paul, J.J. Redick and Jamal Crawford? Not by a mile. Redick and Crawford are elite shooters, even if the stats show otherwise in Jamal’s case. And well, Chris Paul is the point-god, the best guy available to equip the playmaker position in any NBA team.

At the forward/center spots, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan will again suit up for the Clippers. This duo has produced monster stats in the past and is regarded as one of the best in the league. The question though is obvious – will they be as productive as before without Paul orchestrating the offense?

The ball will be at Griffin’s hands more and he will be asked to make plays. The burden will lie heavily on his shoulders and that will be tough without the safety net Paul’s presence provided.

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The real upgrade on paper is at the small forward position. Newly signed Danilo Gallinari is an upgrade on offense over Luc Mbah a Moute. He can create for himself and has an inside-outside game that is much coveted in today’s NBA.

Unfortunately, years and injuries have taken their toll on Gallinari and he lacks the mobility to chase opposing wingmen for long and he would be best suited at the four spot, Blake Griffin’s kingdom.

There is one more change in Los Angeles that most fans forget about though. That is Mr. Jerry West, the man synonymous to front office success. He was, partly at least, responsible for the Lakers Shaq-Kobe dynasty era and the current Golden State Warriors super team.

Maybe the logo has another great move up his sleeve to propel the Clippers at the Association’s upper echelon.

All things accounted, this postseason leaves LA Clippers fan with a sour taste. They will field a good team, they have a strong presence in Doc Rivers at the sidelines and a savvy figure at management.

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What they do not have anymore though, is a legitimate chance to dethrone the Warriors or be a force that deserves to be reckoned with in the loaded Western Conference. They lost all that when they succumbed to the Utah Jazz in the 2017 NBA Playoffs.