Once again, a relatively unknown NBA player is propelled into stardom by the Los Angeles Clippers. Paul Milsap, Carl Landry, Beno Udrih and now Anthony Morrow.
Good players? Definitely but the Clippers have made them all look like All Stars. Morrow posted 37 points, 11 rebounds and 1 assist Saturday afternoon, once again humiliating the Clippers defense in front of a supposed 12,823 fans at Staples Center.
Me oh my.
You might argue that Dirk went for 33 in the Clipper's win last week. Yes well, my arguement there is that Dirk IS a bonafide All Star. He's supposed to go for 33. But Beno Udrih? Anthony Morrow?
Morrow played for almost 42 minutes. Eric Gordon? Once again less than 20. And he seems to me to be the closest to Q. Ross the Clippers have.
Out of all Clippers that played more than 10 minutes, Gordon was third in rebounding (second in offensive boards), second in steals, second in blocks and tied for second in assists. In 19 minutes and 29 seconds!
In the fourth quarter Gordon blocked Morrow and then got a second steal off Morrow in garbage time.
Mike Taylor, who is supposedly the great, quick, pressure defense guy only played 3:55 - most of it in garbage or desperation time.
Once again, my criticism of Dunleavy is the same. Quit trying to matchup body size and put in the best "effort" guys. Play more Gordon, Hart, and Paul Davis. Give them enough time to get a flow going. Quit yanking them when they make mistakes.
Tim Thomas and Ricky Davis still seem like a recipe for swiss cheese defense to me.
Dunleavy should not play them unless the Clippers are ahead by 10. This should be the roatation:
Starters: Kaman, Camby, Thornton, Gordon, Baron
If opponents go small: Camby, Thornton, Gordon, Baron, Taylor
Off the Bench: Paul Davis, Mobley, Ricky Davis, Taylor
If Clippers are ahead: Thomas, Hart
Sure Cuttino was hot early (8 of 17, for 19 points, but only 2 assists in 36 minutes). But he's such an iso player on this team that it's a gamble. He was locked in today so it was ok but he doesn't pass enough or make things happen for other players. The same can be said for Al Thornton. The more I watch him play, the less impressed I am. He takes bad shots and tries to beat people one on one way too often. He takes too long to initiate his offense and the offense goes stagnant and he takes contested shots. You can pretty much put Ricky Davis in the same category as well.
Baron definitely tried way too hard today against his former team. Logging 44 minutes and jacked up ten 3 point attempts, only making three. His plus minus was the worst of all Clippers at -21.
So was there any good news from this game to keep any hope alive for Clipper fans?
1. The Clippers as a team have improved their free throw percentage. They got to the line 28 times and made 25.
2. The Clippers once again missed at least 5 or 6 easy baskets. If those start going in they will be much better because each of those misses turned into 4 or 5 point swings. (-2 for Clips, and a +2 or +3 immediately on the other end for the other team.)
3. The rookies continue to look good. Gordon and Taylor - for as much as we get to see them.
That's about it for now...