I said in the preview that 0-2 in the Kim Hughes era was not the time to panic, and I joked that 0-3 would be the time to panic. Now it doesn't seem so funny.
The Clippers have had some ugly losses lately, but they all pale in comparison to this one. They came back to tie the game in New Jersey before flaming out. Baron Davis put on a show in Minneapolis that at least proved that he was still trying. The team whittled away at Cleveland's huge lead in the second half. (OK, not much redeemable about the San Antonio loss.) This was an irredeemable loss... to a bad team... missing their two leading scorers.
You can almost understand a terrible first quarter. You take a team lightly, you come out flat, they get hot, shoot 80% with a bunch of threes, you fall behind by 18. It's not excusable, but it's understandable. But how do you let them hang 46 on you in the third quarter? How do you come out of the locker room at halftime and look WORSE after suffering through that humiliation? Did the players say to themselves "You know, I enjoyed having my ass handed to me so much in the first half, I think I'd like to do it again"?
Every single Clipper should be ashamed of himself, but special shame should be reserved for Baron Davis and Chris Kaman. I'm not sure what it is about him, but no player in the NBA can stink like Baron can stink. He went 1 for 12 in this one, and threw in a lot of terrible defense to go with it. As for Kaman, he pulled down four rebounds in 26 minutes against the Warriors. Four. (I honestly don't remember him getting any, so four was better than I thought he'd done.) Can the commissioner change his mind and replace Kaman with Boozer?
While we're at it, allowing 62% shooting is a bad stat, but the worst stat of the night by far is the fact that the Clippers were outrebounded by six by the Warriors.
After suffering through last season in which the Clippers had given up by the Holidays and we watched disinterested performance after disinterested performance for more than half the season, I'm not sure I can handle 30 games of this. We need a name for this. Basquitball?
Teams around the league are going to be circling Clippers games on their schedules in the second half. For good teams, it's a chance to get an easy win. For bad teams, it's a chance to get any kind of win. And for EVERYONE, it's a chance to score a career high, like Stephen Curry and Anthony Tolliver tonight.
Sometimes I really hate this team.