Yesterday, the NBA world was sent into emergency mode. What seemed like a fairy tale access to the Western Conference Finals for the Clippers became a tragedy.
In a sudden turn of events, the Los Angeles Clippers failed horribly to close out their series with the Denver Nuggets. Naturally, they have many reasons why they lost. Not among those, was that the Denver Nuggets is a strong opponent.
Even Clippers head coach Doc Rivers has his reasons why his team lost.
The Los Angeles Clippers’ entry into the Playoffs was quite unusual. They have arguably the best roster in the league, so even injuries to Paul George and Kawhi Leonard didn’t set them back to the second seed.
Unfortunately, the team’s injury problems didn’t stop with the two stars. They had to deal with injuries to other key players too, which prevented them from building chemistry.
Fast forward to the Playoffs, the players looked spry individually, but Doc Rivers doesn’t think the same way. He said,
“I was never comfortable. Never was. Conditioning-wise we had guys who couldn’t play minutes.”
There is no other way to interpret this statement. Rivers just thinks that the players were placed in the bubble too soon so they couldn’t get their legs and lungs to cooperate. However, this seems like another reason to wiggle their way out of scrutiny.
Another report even said that some Clippers players struggled to play more than three minutes during the Game 7 bout against the Nuggets.
Other teams like the Phoenix Suns and the Miami Heat all look to be in tiptop shape. The Suns went undefeated in the bubble. The Miami Heat, on the other hand, are looking like a championship team.
Right now, the team has to consider what to do to redeem themselves. Kawhi Leonard is inked with the Clippers until three seasons from now. Paul George, on the other hand, still has a couple of years in his contract. In other words, the Clippers have their core intact until the foreseeable future.
The time may be used to develop the chemistry and conditioning that they have been advocating for. They may also take the time to scour the market for a true point guard to lead the team from start to finish. Otherwise, they just might fall face flat again next year.
Image from Bleacher Report/ YouTube thumbnail
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