The Los Angeles Clippers are currently 16-12 and occupying the No. 4 spot in the Western Conference, but that's not good enough for some. They seemed to have righted the ship a bit following some early season struggles, only to drop back-to-back games in Texas over the weekend. After Saturday night's loss in Houston, Chris Paul sounded fed-up.
CP3 had this to say, courtesy of Ben Bolch of the L.A. Times:
"We're not a team that anybody needs to be worried about, I'll tell you that," Clippers point guard Chris Paul said. "Not right now."
He's not wrong. The Clippers are just 5-9 against teams with records of .500 or better, which obviously doesn't include a pair of losses to the 14-14 Rockets. LAC has been beating up on the league's mediocre teams. Based on record, the best wins for the Clippers this season have been the two victories over the 16-12 Detroit Pistons. The Pistons, while clearly improved this season, are still sitting in the East's No. 8 spot. They're a solid opponent, but the notion that they're the best team the Clippers have beaten is a bit concerning.
Several times already this season this team has found itself on the cusp of beating a quality club, only to fall short in the end. They gave the Spurs a run for their money last Friday. They competed well against the Warriors in both meetings, even holding a 20+ point lead in one of them, only to let them slip away. The Chicago loss was an ugly all-around affair, but, once again, the win was there for the taking.
Obviously, these are games the Clippers are going to have to start winning if they want anyone to take them seriously as championship contenders. There's no participation trophy in the NBA. They'll have their work cut-out for them this evening, as well, with the 18-9 Oklahoma City Thunder coming to town.