The 2019-20 Clippers season is already one of the most successful in franchise history. The Clippers were on pace to finish with the second seed in the Western Conference, their highest-ever rank to end the regular season, and most people had them pegged to advance at least as far as the conference finals for the first time.
The configurations of the postseason are no longer set in stone, but there is plenty to celebrate about the Clippers season thus far. ESPN picked its favorite plays from each team this season, and their Clippers selection is a highlight that transcends this fan base.
ESPN selected the moment when Patrick Beverley swiped the ball from LeBron James near the end of the L.A. Christmas Day clash. Whether it was a block or a steal doesn’t really matter. The Clippers were up by three, and Beverley sealed the win against one of the best players in the game.
It is an excellent choice, and I have no complaints. But as long as we’re on the topic of favorite plays, here are some others.
Paul George’s game-winner against the Thunder was so poetic. To secure the win against his former team in the second game of his Clippers career felt like a symbolic changing of the guard.
The entire final sequence of the Clippers’ home game later that week against the Rockets was appointment viewing, capped off by Kawhi Leonard’s game-winning jumper from his favorite spot on the floor.
There are many Leonard dunks that also deserve mention (the one over Daniel Theis immediately comes to mind) as well as Lou Williams clutch shots, but we can’t be here all day. If you have a suggestion you’d like to add to the list, please let us know in the comments. It is always a good time to watch Clippers highlights.
On to the links...
- We discussed re-seeding the playoffs 1-16 yesterday regardless of conference, and Kevin Pelton of ESPN outlined how that would affect the Clippers’ chances. As we suspected, the Clippers don’t exactly benefit.
- Another proposal that has come up is having the top 20 teams play a group stage (similar to international competitions) that leads into the postseason bracket. The Clippers’ group in The Ringer’s projection honestly looks pretty great.
- NBPA executive director Michele Roberts insists the the players “really want to play”, but they need certainty from the league regarding its plans. Meanwhile, Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers has said that he has no interest in playing regular-season games if the playoffs are out of reach, and other upcoming free agents might feel similarly. Some young teams out of postseason contention are still interested in playing so that they don’t have nine months off from basketball. Suffice to say, there are still debates to be resolved.
- The Wall Street Journal examined how the NBA has moved its goal posts regarding safety since Rudy Gobert’s positive test.
- One thing is clear: Charles Barkley is 100 percent certain that the NBA will return this season.
- CBS looked at the biggest questions teams will face in a theoretical postseason, including what lineups serve the Clippers best.
- And finally, one of the Clippers’ Staples Center roommates has officially ended its season as the NHL canceled the remainder of its regular season in the hopes of moving forward with a 24-team playoff.