Many of us suspected that the Clippers might get off to a slow start this season, as nine new players and a new defensive scheme take time to develop and integrate into a team. However, it's not so much their record that has people concerned about the team's start; it's the way they've lost, blowing double-digit leads by falling apart late in games. After Friday's loss to Portland, Blake Griffin accepted responsibility for the way they've been playing and had this to say about the team moving forward (from Rowan Kavner, Clippers.com):
"We have to be better. The guys that have been here, J.J., CP, me, DJ, Jamal, we've got to be better. We've got to show everybody the way a little bit. Not that they don't know how to play, but just our style and the way we deal with things. We've got to find it."
Griffin went on to acknowledge that it's a long season, but that the team recognizes the need for a sense of urgency to make changes and improve their execution.
"We're 12 games in. It's not something we're just, like, whatever about it, moving on, but we've got to make changes. We've got to have a sense of urgency to do that now, but at the same time, no one's crumbling."
The Clippers will have a chance to right the ship against the Raptors this afternoon. It's still early in the season, but it would be a welcome sight to see them knock down some threes, rebound the ball well, and finish the game strong against one of the top teams in the East.