Late in the off-season, the Clippers acquired Honorary Splash Brother for 3 minutes in one of the most important games of Clipper history, Josh Smith. For a minimum contract, he was a great signing, as he offered several strengths, including defense and passing. However, he was not without his faults; in fact, Josh Smith was waived by the Detroit Pistons early last season. For those unfamiliar with the cap, this was a shocking move as it left a fairly large negative impact on the Pistons cap space for several years to come. Essentially, the Pistons were saying, "We would rather pay you to not be on our team, than any other option."
After clearing waivers, several teams made a play at Smith, and while he came out and said the Clippers were his second option, there is no consolation prize for almost signing a player. After a solid season on the Rockets, Smith decided to sign with the Clippers in the off-season. This was a bit of a surprise, as it meant turning down more money and years from a strong Western Conference team. That being said, with the emergence of Clint Capela and Motiejunas (in addition to Terrence Jones), his reasoning made a lot of sense: the Clippers could offer him consistent minutes and a more stable position on the team.
The fit seemed ideal. With the signing of Cole Aldrich, the Clippers could use him at his natural PF position, or even play him at the stretch 5 when the team wants to play small ball. Additionally, Smith showed great promise when paired up with guys capable of playing above the rim, as he was able to feed Dwight Howard lobs extremely well. Everything seemed like it was going to work out, until it became clear that there was a rift in Doc and Smith's relationship.
Recently, he has been getting fewer and fewer minutes, up until last game, where Doc claimed Aldrich took his position as the backup center. Now, there is still no telling whether Doc intends to use Smith in another position, or if Aldrich can even keep up his solid play, but regardless, it's clear that Doc and Smith are not exactly on the best of terms.
According to Dan Woike:blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en">
Josh Smith was asked if he was happy in Los Angeles -- "I’ve had my ups and downs, but for the most part, I’m a positive individual."
— Dan Woike (@DanWoikeSports) December 24, 2015
Interpret that how you want, but it's clearly not the most encouraging answer. Time will tell what Josh's future is with the Clippers, and let's hope it is a positive one, because he is really solid player who can definitely help this team out.