The snowball is gaining momentum.
A desperate attempt by the Clippers to squeeze out a couple more wins in November (in games they had little chance of winning) has resulted in a winless December (in three games they should have won). It is one month tomorrow since Cat Mobley pulled his groin muscle. But Cat only sat out for a week, and the Clippers are 2-9 in the 11 games since he came back. His production has been abysmally bad in those 11 games, and he's 19 for 70 (27%) during the seven game losing streak. So it is truly the worst of both worlds. He is hindering the cause now, and he's not getting healthy for later. If he had sat the remainder of November, over 3 weeks, it's difficult to imagine that the Clippers would have a worse record right now. More importantly, Cat would be 100% and we would not be subjected to more 2 for 10 nights (he was 1 for 9 when it counted before a meaningless make at the end). This would all be less absurd if everyone hadn't known better. When he played against the Knicks, he could barely walk. Trainer Jasen Powell said without equivocation that the groin would take significantly longer to heal if he tried to play. And the Clippers spoke openly of needing to shut him down even after he had come back. Yet he has averaged over 32 minutes per game in the last 11, while producing basically nothing, because MDsr needs his blanket. By the way, Kevin Martin of the Kings just pulled a groin muscle, and is expected to miss 4 to 6 weeks. Obviously, muscle pulls can vary in severity. But it never made sense, the way Cat left the floor in Indianapolis, for a 32 year old guy to come back in a week. Never. And the losing continues.
Cat's elbow is a more complicated situation. There was no mention of it in the press or anywhere as far as I know until late November, but then they said he hurt it in a fall in Indy, way back on Nov. 7. Ralph keeps talking about how ugly it is. What is the prognosis? (We don't know.) Should he be resting it instead of playing? (It sure would seem so.) How is it affecting his game? We know that he's been a horribly bad shooter since injuring his shooting elbow (and his groin of course), so we have some circumstantial, cause-and-effect evidence there. But in the Seattle game, I noticed something much more concrete. Cat Mobley is left handed, and tends to do EVERYTHING with his left. Unlike many NBA players, he rarely finishes with his off hand, even on layups on the right side. Like Lamar Odom, he's just all left. Last night Mobley missed three point-blank layups - and all of them were taken right handed. If healthy, it would be unusual for Cat to shoot with his right one time, forget about three times. There's no question that the elbow is a MAJOR problem for him.
It may not be too much longer before the snowball overtakes the Clippers one shining bright spot, Chris Kaman. He's currently playing an average of 38.3 minutes per game, while his high for a season was previously 32.8. He played 41 minutes on Tuesday night, and 42 minutes on Wednesday night - I don't need to look it up to know that the guy has never played 83 NBA minutes in 27 hours before. In the first half against Seattle, he had 15 points and 10 rebounds. In the second half, he had 4 and 4 and he looked fatigued. How much longer before he gets worn down by his current workload?