The Clippers moved quickly when their off-season began, kicking off a bench overhaul by trading Spencer Hawes and Matt Barnes for Lance Stephenson. Soon after the trade was finalized, Doc Rivers noted that he intended for Stephenson to come off the bench due to his versatility. This acquisition in particular caused some discontent with Crawford, as both players are known for being ball dominant SGs. The two-time Sixth Man of the Year took to Twitter to express his uncertainty, an move that ClipperNation has seen and overanalyzed time and time again. Easily the most alarming Tweet came during Crawford to Cleveland trade rumors, when Crawford said, "I'm not a free agent, wish but I'm not." Jamal tweeted things like this throughout summer, but it seems that he has finally bought into his new, likely diminished role.
Recently,Dan Woike of OCRegister reported that Crawford and Doc Rivers had spoken about this potential discontent. Initially, Doc admitted that
"[Jamal] wasn’t happy. He was venting. And, I let him be."
But after reaching out to him, Jamal has bought into his new role on the team, claiming
“I’m so far in... No matter what it is – touches, minutes – everyone’s going to have to sacrifice something to go where we want to go. “And I know that, whole-heartedly.”
On a related note, Lance had a successful outing as the Clippers starting SF, and it appears that Doc is going to give him another crack at it according to Ben Bolch. Unfortunately (and somewhat unsurprisingly), the Crawford/Stephenson duo seemed to be going very poorly, so hopefully this change in the lineup can be beneficial to both players.