Posted by D.J. Foster on July 8, 2012 And that’s really the problem. The Clippers are only acting as an elite franchise, operating the way they think an elite franchise does, getting the players they think the elite franchises want. But you know what elite franchises also do? They hire the best coach available, and if they don’t, they sure as hell don’t stick the placeholder coach in the front office to make decisions. They pay their employees YEARLY salaries. They don’t hold fake searches for a new GM. They hire an actual GM, and a scouting department, and an analytics crew and empower those people to make basketball decisions so the part time real estate mogul, part time heckler and professional accountant don’t have to. They use leverage and they seize opportunities to get better. They identify needs — not wants — and prioritize them and address them. They go into the tax and cough up a few bucks if they really feel they’re that close to a title. They acquire draft picks. They focus on the present and the future, because they know their star player will do the same when the time comes. Crawford looks like an elite player, and the Clippers look like an elite franchise. But for both Crawford and the Clippers right now, there’s too much evidence telling us otherwise.