Well, it's pre-season and you take it for what it's worth. Losing 109-103 to a Warriors team playing without Baron Davis, Stephen Jackson or Andris Biedrins is not a good thing. Under no circumstances.
But some undeniably good things did happen for the Clippers in this game:
- The Clippers battled back from a 20 point deficit in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 98. Sure, they ran out of steam and ended up losing despite making it all the way back (that happens a lot), but the comeback itself tells you this team is going to fight this season.
- Corey Maggette, Chris Kaman and Sam Cassell all scored over 20 points. Cassell played 30 minutes, which is the most minutes he's played this post season. He was on the floor leading the comeback, another good sign.
- Kaman had his second consecutive strong outing, making 8 of 9 shots, with 8 rebounds and 4 blocks. The block shots the last few games are particularly encouraging, indicating that Chris is engaged and active on the defensive end. He did have 4 turnovers, including a crucial travel with 90 seconds left and the Clippers down by only 2. One more thing: shouldn't we get the guy a few more shots if he's 8 for 9?
- The lineup on the court during the comeback was Cassell, Maggette, Kaman, Mobley and Al
HarringtonThornton. Ralph and Mike mentioned that Tim Thomas' back might have tightened up (he started but played only 12 minutes), but still, it's interesting, right? The veteran backcourt, the athletic forwards, and the enigmatic, hopefully emerging center.
- Who knows if it means anything, but MDsr started Kaman, Thomas, Maggette, Ross and Cassell. My guess is that's the lineup that will start next Friday as well.
- The Clippers as a team were 27 for 28 at the free throw line, one of the things that got them back into the game. Maggette led the way making all 13 of his.
- I am concerned with the fact that the Clippers had another terrible second quarter, one of several this pre-season. With a one point lead and 6 minutes to go in the first half, they gave up a 23-8 run to fall behind by 14 at the half. You'll recall that they gave up a 30-6 run in the last 7.5 minutes of the first half against the Suns. I have no theories as to why this is happening, but it's not good.
- Josh Powell has had rough nights back-to-back. He committed 3 fouls in 4 minutes on Wednesday, 4 fouls in 17 minutes in this one.
So, too bad, the Clippers lose the game. The good news is a respectable 4-4 in pre-season, and an impressive comeback in this game, even if it did come up short.
It'll be deja vu all over again next Friday, when these same teams meet on the same floor in the Clippers home opener. That one will count. The Clippers might consider playing in the 2nd and 3rd quarters as well, rather than just waiting for the fourth.