Tag:Los Angeles Clippers
Posted on: January 16, 2011 7:14 pm
Edited on: January 16, 2011 7:26 pm
 

Lakers, Clippers skirmish leads to 4 ejections

The Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers got into a skirmish at the end of their game Sunday that resulted in ejections for Lamar Odom, Ron Artest, Blake Griffin and Baron Davis. Posted by Ben Golliver.

The giant-killing Los Angeles Clippers did it again on Sunday, defeating the Los Angeles Lakers in the same week that they toppled the mighty Miami Heat. But the Clippers' victory wasn't without some endgame drama, as a skirmish broke out in the game's final seconds that resulted in four players being ejected.

During a Randy Foye free throw that gave the Clippers a 98-90 lead with less than six seconds remaining in the game, Clippers forward Blake Griffin shoved Lakers forward Lamar Odom underneath the basket as they jockeyed for rebounding position. Considering the game was already in hand, it was an unnecessary play by Griffin, but it's fairly understandable because Griffin doesn't have an off switch. He goes hard. Always.

After Foye's free throw went in the hoop, Odom grasped Griffin's jersey and swung him, and the two stared each other down. Clippers point guard Baron Davis raced into the scrum to separate the two combatants, leading Odom to give Davis a slight shove in return, which led to more jawing. Lakers forward Ron Artest then entered the fray, attempting to extricate Odom from the group from behind, to no avail. That led Artest to swing his arms out a bit in the general direction of Foye. Eventually, the referees were able to separate the two teams and complete the game's final six seconds.

When all was said and done, Odom, Artest, Griffin and Davis were all ejected from the game.

Here's the Clippers feed video of the skirmish, courtesy of YouTube user nbafufu.




Here's the Lakers feed video of the incident, courtesy of YouTube user NBAPlaybook.



Back in December, Portland Trail Blazers point guard Andre Miller took exception to Griffin in a similar situation, as Miller was upset that Griffin shoved him in the back while attempting to gain rebounding position on consecutive plays. Miller retaliated by body-checking Griffin at full speed, which resulted in a fine and one-game suspension by the NBA.

After the game resumed, the Clippers held on for a 99-92 victory. With the win, the Clippers improved to 14-25 on the season. The Lakers dropped to 30-12.
Posted on: January 14, 2011 1:35 am
 

Heat Stroke: The 72-10 dream is dead

The Heat fall to the Nuggets for their eleventh loss, ending the desperate dream of them matching the '96 Bulls
Posted by Matt Moore

There will be no joy in Mudville, mighty LeBron did sit out.

Before the season, the NBA's biggest question was not if the Heat would mesh, it was whether they would challenge the all-time best record for a regular season team set by the '96 Chicago Bulls at 72-10.  On Thursday night, that dream was mercifully put to rest much earlier than most people anticipated. Following a deep November swoon, the Heat had righted themselves and at one point had won 19 of 20 games. But a West Coast road trip against a motivated Blake Griffin led to a shocker loss to the Clippers Wednesday, and on Thursday, LeBron James sat out Thursday's game against the Nuggets, and the result was a 28-point loss.  And so they fall to 30-11. 

72-10 is no longer within range. 

It was a silly objective to begin with, hoping for a team laden with ancient role players, facing injury problems from the get-go, and trying to gel for the first time in a complex combination of talents to aim for the highest peak in historic NBA land.  It became absurd over the opening stretch where the Heat went 9-8, exposing significant issues and showing that this team was a work in progress. From there, it was only a matter of time. That they managed to rebound as significantly as they did, driving the point of double digit losses into 2011. 

And so it ends, not with a late season quest, under constant coverage from ESPN 24-7 (or from us, for that matter), but with a quiet road loss in a late game, downed by 28 points without the signature star they brought in amid the most controversial free agency decision in sports history.  From the beginning, the Heat said that this season was about wins, not about 72-10. It was about a championship, not catching Jordan's Bulls. Now they've set the table. A loss in the playoffs and they cement themselves as the biggest disappointment based on expectations of the modern era. Win, and they show that all the hoopla over the regular season was inconsequential and that it is all about the rings. But unlike LA or Boston, who seem to lose nearly only when they lack effort, the Heat seem to lose when boiled down to their essential parts, when the chemistry doesn't mesh. 

The glory of being legends has escaped the Heat. The pressure is now even greater to become champions. That's what they've put on themselves with all their behavior. Anything less than a championship and they are a disappointment to their fans and a joke to their detractors. Oddly enough, the word I keep thinking of is ... 

Karma.
Posted on: January 13, 2011 9:40 pm
Edited on: January 13, 2011 11:02 pm
 

LeBron James out for Heat against Nuggets

LeBron James of the Miami Heat was officially listed as "doubtful" to play on Thursday against the Denver Nuggets after spraining his ankle on Wednesday against the Los Angeles Clippers. Posted by Ben Golliver.

Update (10:53 PM): LeBron James of the Miami Heat has been officially ruled out for tonight's game against the Nuggets in Denver.

Original Post: On Wednesday night, we noted that LeBron James of the Miami Heat sprained his left ankle while driving to the hoop midway through the fourth quarter of a loss to the Clippers in Los Angeles.

The Heat flew to Denver to play the second half of a back-to-back on Thursday, and the word from Heat coach Erik Spoelstra before the game was that James was downgraded to "doubtful" from "questionable" for the game, according to the Sun-Sentinel. The paper also reported James showed up to the arena wearing flip flops and that Spoelstra hopes James can play on Saturday against the Chicago Bulls.

If James doesn't play, as expected, reserve forward James Jones will start in his place.

Here's the video of James spraining his ankle against the Clippers. 

Posted on: January 13, 2011 12:02 pm
Edited on: January 13, 2011 12:04 pm
 

Game Changer: Clippers drop Heat in a wild one

LeBron James and the Miami Heat finally lose, Elvis Night in Detroit, Blake Griffin throws down a double-pump dunk past Dwyane Wade, and the San Antonio Spurs run a gorgeous play for a big basket. Posted by Ben Golliver.

Each game is made up of elements which help formulate the outcome. Monday through Friday, we'll bring you the elements from the night before's games in our own specialized version of the game recaps. It's not everything that happened, but it's an insight into what lead to the results you'll see in the box scores. This is the Game Changer. 

THE BIG ONE: MIAMI HEAT FINALLY LOSE

The numbers were starting to get ridiculous. Nine straight wins. 13 straight wins on the road. 21 wins out of their last 22 games. Finally, karmically, the Miami Heat lost a game on Wednesday night, dropping a thriller in Los Angeles to the Clippers, 111-105.

The pre-game scene was reportedly a circus, as LeBron James provided a wishy-washy explanation for a tweet seemingly directed at his former team, the Cleveland Cavaliers. And while James, his teammates and his coach tried to play it off, the Clippers were busy playing out of their minds, running out to a 44-26 first quarter lead. 

The Clippers' energy on both ends was something special, and they were able to maintain it for 48 minutes, avoiding a late collapse like that one that befell the Portland Trail Blazers earlier this week. The Heat mounted a late push, but James was slowed by a sprained ankle (video here) suffered midway during the fourth quarter, and was noticeably dragging through the game's final minutes.

Clippers forward Blake Griffin has had about 238 coming-out parties so far this season, but Wednesday night was another one, as he rose to the challenge against marquee competition, finishing with 24 points, 14 rebounds and six assists. Griffin got into a heated exchange with Heat point guard Mario Chalmers, which drew a technical, but he responded to the emotion of the moment in the best way he knows how: throwing down a ridiculous double-pump dunk that sent the Staples Center into a tizzy (see below for video). And let's not overlook his gorgeous turnaround jumper off the glass that made him look more like a two guard than a four or his continued ownership of the backboards. He's an All-Star, case closed. 

It wasn't just Griffin, though. Baron Davis was rising up to dunk too, and laying it out to dive on the floor for loose balls. Clippers guard Eric Bledsoe had a number of nice defensive plays and dimes, including an exceptional swat of James (see below). And Eric Gordon, perhaps the most unheralded scorer in the NBA, quietly put up 26 points, five rebounds and six assists to almost single-handedly offset 27 points from James. Put it together, and this was about as entertaining and theatric as January NBA basketball gets.  

GO-GO-GADGET LINES OF THE NIGHT:

So, so many ridiculous stat lines last night.

Zach Randolph: 34 points, 17 rebounds, two assists, one block, one steal in 46 minutes in a Memphis Grizzlies road win over the Detroit Pistons.

Dwight Howard: 29 points, 20 rebounds, two blocks, one steal in 48 minutes in an Orlando Magic road win over the New Orleans Hornets.

Russell Westbrook: 23 points, 8 rebounds, 13 assists and two steals in 37 minutes in an Oklahoma City Thunder road win over the Houston Rockets.

Steve Nash: 23 points, seven rebounds, 16 assists and one steal in 42 minutes in a Phoenix Suns home win over the New Jersey Nets.

Kobe Bryant: 39 points, six rebounds, four assists, three steals in 36 minutes in a Los Angeles Lakers road win over the Golden State Warriors.

Blake Griffin: 24 points, 14 rebounds, six assists, one steal, one block in 43 minutes in a Los Angeles Clippers home win over the Miami Heat.

D.J. Augustin: 22 points, three rebounds, 12 assists in 39 minutes in a Charlotte Bobcats home win over the Chicago Bulls.

DON'T MISS:

WHIMSY:

The Memphis Grizzlies came to town so it was "Elvis Night" in Detroit. Oh, dear.
elvis-night

HIGHLIGHT REEL PART ONE:


Here's Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin throwing down a double-pump dunk to avoid Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade and electrify the Staples Center crowd.



HIGHLIGHT REEL PART TWO:


Here's Los Angeles Clippers guard Eric Bledsoe getting way up to swat a layup attempt by LeBron James. via YouTube user thehoopscene.


FINAL THOUGHT:

It wasn't flashy like the Heat and Clippers, but it was oh so effective. You really must take a look at this inbounds set play, charted by NBAPlaybook.com, from the San Antonio Spurs, which brilliantly uses misdirection, confusion and multiple screens to free up Tim Duncan for an uncontested dunk.
Posted on: January 13, 2011 11:15 am
 

Baron Davis is dunking and the Clips are winning

Posted by Royce Young

It seems like it's been years since we've had a quality Baron Davis dunk. Seems like the last one stuck in my brain is his cram over Andrei Kirilenko when he was still with Golden State.

But last night against the Heat, Baron turned back the clock and stuffed one over Miami.



This makes three consecutive good games for Davis after starting the season relatively slow. Against the Heat, Davis had 20 points and nine assists and I think only one dribble-the-shot-clock-out-and-shoo
t-a-3 play. Progress!

But it's becoming evident as the Clippers start to win a little that Davis is absolutely vital in their success. He doesn't have to go for 20 and nine every night, but having him locked in and focused is big. He's got to be there to steady the ship when things get crazy. Like last night against the Heat, the Clippers led by 21. Naturally, they blew this lead.

Instead of completely wilting though, Davis was there to assert control and get his young guys where they needed to be. He hit a huge runner in the lane late, made some nice passes for easy looks and just played a stellar game.

The big knock on Davis has always been his desire and focus, but he looks rejuvinated to me. Playing with Blake Griffin and lobbing him all those oops seems to have Davis having fun again. The Clips' awful, horrible start to the season will essentially doom 2010-11, but there's a lot to play for. Los Angeles is now 13-24 and winner of eight of 11. They've beat six teams over .500. For reference, the Heat have beat eight. They have wins over the Thunder, the Heat, the Spurs, Chicago and beat New Orleans when it was the best in the league.

It's just about consistency for this young Clipper team. I thought Kenny Smith put it great last night on NBATV. He said that the Clippers have to start playing the course, not the opponent. In golf you don't worry about who you're paired with. You worry about the hole you're on. The Clippers clearly bring some extra focus and energy when they're playing a big name team. If they brought that against everyone, then they wouldn't have started the way they did.

But let's fantasize for a moment. What kind of record would the eight-seed in the West have this year? Right now Portland is eighth and hovering around .500. So let's say 41-41 gets you into the postseason. That would mean the Clips would need to go 28-17 the rest of the way. Doesn't that seem totally possible right now? Heck, I could see them going 30-15 at this point if they start playing every night.

Again, that's fantasy. The Clips could easily come back to earth and lose six straight at the drop of a hat. Young teams a like that. Combustible. There is a lot of talent there and while the hole might be too deep to get out of this year, there's at least a real reason to be excited about what's to come for the other tenant at Staples.
Posted on: January 13, 2011 9:15 am
 

Shootaround 1.13.11: Clips win their championship

Posted by Royce Young
  • Maybe Andre Iguodala was rushed back: "Hindsight is 20-20, but had Noch been healthy, maybe Dre could have gotten a few more practices under his belt before he played," Collins told The Philadelphia Inquirer ."
  • Mark Heisler of the Los Angeles Times: "In an unofficial poll, broadcasters Don MacLean, Michael Eaves and I decided it had to be the greatest quarter in Clippers history. Of course, in other teams' histories, they keep track of seasons, not quarters. After that, what figured to happen, happened. The Heat got control of the runaway Clippers offense, holding them to 24 points in the second quarter and 18 in the third. Midway through the fourth quarter, Miami cut it to 97-95 when James drove, had the ball batted away by Al-Farouq Aminu, fell out of bounds, got up limping, hopped back onto the floor, found himself trapped in the corner with the ball and the 24-second clock running out … and knocked in a three-pointer. Then something amazing happened. The Heat was spent. The Clippers had more left, especially in the way of hunger. So now, as the Clippers look around, who else's world can they shock? Oh, they play the Lakers here Sunday."
  • Bud Shaw of The Plain Dealer: "If you're keeping track of this poker game, LeBron James just saw Dan Gilbert's Hindu reference and raised him a deity. Both messages, Gilbert's and James, were spiteful and self-serving. Both claimed a higher power -- the universe, God -- were doing each's bidding. I wish these guys would agree to a third-party mediation, preferably with Dr. Phil. My guess is Gilbert doesn't mind James' latest shot as much as resentful Cavaliers fans do. James' tweet absorbed some of the anger more deservedly directed at Gilbert's team after the worst performance in franchise history."
  • Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer: "Paul Silas has always had this gift for making people believe in themselves. That’s what’s going on with D.J. Augustin, who needed that more than any Bobcat. So Augustin’s best game as a pro – 22 points, 12 assists and a single turnover against one of the NBA’s best, Derrick Rose, is a direct result of Silas’ psychology."
Posted on: January 13, 2011 2:30 am
 

LeBron James sprains left ankle, X-rays negative

LeBron James of the Miami Heat sprained his left ankle during the fourth quarter of Wednesday night's game against the Los Angeles Clippers, but X-rays were negative. Posted by Ben Golliver.

Midway through the fourth quarter of Wednesday night's game between the Miami Heat and the Los Angeles Clippers, Heat forward LeBron James sprained his ankle while driving to the basket. 

The injury occurred as James drove past Clippers forward Al-Farouq Aminu. Clippers guard Baron Davis dove down to offer help defense, and James' left ankle rolled over as he appeared to plant on Davis' right foot. James lost control of the ball and went hopping on one foot deep into the stands, but then recovered to come hobbling back on the court. He promptly received the ball, and with the shot clock running down, hit a corner three over Aminu off of one foot. 

After making the shot, which cut Los Angeles's lead to 94-92, James hopped to the bench and was attended to by Heat trainers. He re-entered the game and played down the stretch, although he limped at times.

After the game, the Los Angeles Times reported that "LeBron said he has an x-ray of his ankle and there was no damage." The paper also quoted James saying that he is "day to day." The Heat play the Nuggets in Denver on Thursday night on the second half of a road back-to-back.  
Here's video of the injury.


The Clippers held on for a 111-105 win. James finished with 27 points, eight rebounds and six assists in 40 minutes of action.
Posted on: January 12, 2011 9:58 pm
Edited on: January 12, 2011 10:10 pm
 

LeBron James retreats from Cavs 'karma' tweet

LeBron James claims he had "no intent" when he tweeted that "Karma is a b****" after the Los Angeles Lakers destroyed the Cleveland Cavaliers onlebron-james Tuesday night. Posted by Ben Golliver.

On Tuesday night, shortly after the Los Angeles Lakers destroyed the Cleveland Cavaliers, we noted a tweet from Miami Heat forward LeBron James which read, "Crazy. Karma is a b****.. Gets you every time. Its not good to wish bad on anybody. God sees everything!" 

Although James did not explicitly make reference to the Cavaliers or owner Dan Gilbert, it was widely assumed that James was referring to his former team and/or owner, Dan Gilbert, with whom he messily split this summer when he opted to take his talents to South Beach and team up with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami.

Before Wednesday's game between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Miami Heat, James backed away from the perceived sentiment of the tweet, claiming that it wasn't intentionally directed at the Cavaliers or Gilbert. The Sun-Sentinel reports that James said that he had "no intent" with the tweet and implied that the entire episode was a poorly-timed misunderstanding.
"It was just how I was feeling at the time," he said. Yet he added in the same breath, "It wasn't even a comment from me. It was someone who sent it to me and I sent it out."
"I don't think it was no intent at all," he said. "I think everyone looks into everything I say. Everybody looked too far into it. It wasn't no intent at all."
"No hit toward that organization. I've moved on. Hopefully that organization has continued to move on. But I'm happy where I am as a Miami Heat player."
James, who posts under the Twitter username @KingJames, has more than 1.24 million followers on the social networking site.

Of course, this isn't the first time James has tried to wiggle out of a controversy of his own making. James drew criticism in December for advocating contraction, and then drew more ire when he backed off his statements by claiming he didn't know what the word "contraction" meant.

While the assumed intent of James' tweet was completely classless, his failure to take responsibility for his words is perplexing. He can't possibly expect everyone to believe this was simply a coincidence, especially given the immediate and national outcry the tweet provoked, and the fact that he didn't bother posting a clarification.

If the tweet wasn't accidental, and it's impossible to believe it was, what are our alternate explanations? Perhaps this song-and-dance is all a game to James? Perhaps he enjoys the thrill of watching his words sweep the country and provoke strong reactions? Perhaps he's reserving his right as a human being to make flip comments and settle scores without needing to explain them in minute detail to a national audience?

Who knows. But the episode goes down as another black mark on James' reputation, both for the vindictiveness of the original message and the feebleness of his unbelievable explanation.
 
 
 
 
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