Tag:Los Angeles Clippers
Posted on: December 6, 2010 12:39 pm
Edited on: August 14, 2011 9:15 pm
 

The Game Changer: Blake Griffin beasting

Blake Griffin is a game changer, a fight in Portland, big nights for a familiar pair in two different cities, and a lot of questions circling in New Orleans about the future of the HornetsPosted 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: BLAKE GRIFFIN IS BEASTING

Normally, when we write in this space about a "game changer," we're talking about a single game. Today, we'll talk Blake Griffin, who is starting to demonstrate on a regular basis that he has the ability to change the entire NBA. Too big, too fast, too bouncy, too agile. He's everything at once, and more. As a rookie, Griffin is averaging 20.6 points and 11.8 assists through the first quarter of the season. He's been coming on as well, putting up 23.6 points, 13 rebounds and 3 assists over the last 11 games. That production hasn't translated to many wins for a young Los Angeles Clippers, but there's no question that he's doing his part, throwing down ridiculous dunks, putting on absurd displays of athleticism on a nightly basis and guarding just about anyone his team asks him to, switching out on perimeter players in pick-and-roll situations without a second thought. The pre-game buzz on Sunday in Portland was that there was a potential all star power forward taking the court, and it wasn't LaMarcus Aldridge of the Blazers. Griffin indeed dominated the match-up, putting up 21 points, 15 rebounds, two assists, two steals and just one turnover in 40 minutes of play. Most impressively, he got to the free throw line 16 times, fouling out Aldridge in the process (although he struggled to deliver at the stripe). Aldridge finished with four points, five rebounds, one assist, six fouls and just 2-10 shooting, a relative non-factor in his team's ability to finally end their six-game losing streak.   
Afterwards, Griffin didn't want to hear any all star potential talk, especially after the loss. "I don't know. No," he said in response to whether he's allowed the thought to enter his mind. "I'd much rather be on a winning team. I've got a lot of work to do before I get to that level." All star or not, Griffin is seeing his game progress after missing all of last season with an injury. "[My game] a lot better. I feel like I'm in a rhythm. Some games are better than others obviously. The key is just to limit those bad games and keep improving at the same." He also said his struggles at the free throw line -- he finished 7-16, and bent over while at the stripe, mad at himself -- are a point of emphasis. "It's frustrating whenever you miss free throws like that. The thing is I know I can make them, I've just got to do it." The Clippers dropped the game, but Griffin was glad to see how his teammates handled a chippy second half (video below), which included a flagrant foul 2 for his teammate Brian Cook and numerous technical fouls. "I thought we handled it well. We had guys stick up for our teammates. That's what you like to see. I just think you've got to keep that attitude, you can't let people punk us. I'm not saying that's what Portland was trying to do, but we can't back down from anybody." And really, Blake Griffin backs down from no one, because he's too busy sailing over the top of them.

GO-GO-GADGET LINE OF THE NIGHT:

Let's reunited these two for a night, for old time's sake.

Steve Nash: 20 points, three rebounds, 17 assists, two turnovers on 8-8 shooting in 30 minutes in a home win over the Washington Wizards.
Amar'e Stoudemire: 31 points, 16 rebounds, two assists, one steal, two turnovers on 12-24 shooting in 38 minutes in a road win over the Toronto Raptors. Runner-Up...

Stephen Curry
: 39 points, one rebound, six assists, two steals on 14-20 shooting in 46 minutes in a road loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder.

DON'T MISS:

VIDEO CLIP MADNESS:

Here's a video look at the throwdown in Sunday night's game between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Los Angeles Clippers. Clippers big man Brian Cook shoves Blazers center Joel Przybilla out of the air during a dunk attempt at the rim, causing him to come crashing to the ground. A scuffle ensues, with Clippers guard Baron Davis and Nicolas Batum exchanging words and bumps. Przybilla and Clippers big man Craig Smith also went back and forth. Cook was issued a flagrant foul 2 and was immediately ejected. The other four were issued technical fouls.

 

The scene was very reminiscent of the exchange between the Miami Heat and the Washington Wizards last week, which led to the ejection of Wizards center Hilton Armstrong.

WHIMSY:

The Raptors lost, but new guard Jerryd Bayless, acquired from a trade in New Orleans, is flying in to the rescue, here to provide excitement and hope. Bayless finished with 23 points, seven rebounds, and six assists in 27 minutes off the Raptors bench in a home loss to the New York Knicks.

jerryd-bayless

FINAL THOUGHTS:

To add an insult on top of all the questions that are swirling about the franchise's future in New Orleans, the Hornets got trucked by the San Antonio Spurs, 109-84. Brutal day.

Posted on: December 2, 2010 11:40 am
Edited on: December 2, 2010 11:47 am
 

The Game Changer: A lot happened last night

Posted by Royce Young

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: BOOZER RETURNS, ORLANDO DOESN'T CARE

The Bulls were just coming off some of the best basketball of their season. They were returning home after a great road trip and were hosting one of the top teams in the East. They were ready to say something and to do so, they were finally getting the services of their biggest offseason acquisition.

Carlos Boozer was back.

Problem was, the Orlando Magic didn't care. They had business to take care of. And take care of business they did.

The Magic plowed the Bulls 107-78 in a game that wasn't really ever close. Even after the first quarter when it was 28-22, it felt like the Bulls were just hanging on. Orlando dominated everything. They outrebounded Chicago 44-21, (only 21 rebounds for Chicago!), hit 49 percent from the field, went 10-21 from 3, only missed one free throw and got 81 points from their starting five. One guy didn't stick out for the Magic. It was just a total team beatdown.

So maybe the Bulls aren't quite ready yet.

But how did Boozer do? In 22 minutes he went 2-5 for five points and two rebounds. It wasn't really the kind of game though where Boozer could make much of an impact though, so I wouldn't judge anything based off it. However, if you're looking for a crazy stat of the night, how about Joakim Noah - the league's second leading rebounder - not grabbing a single rebound in 25 minutes?

GO-GO-GADGET LINES

Tough to really single anyone out on this night with a number of big nights across the league. Russell Westbrook was an assist away from a massive triple-double as he went for 38 points, nine assists and 15 rebounds.

Westbrook's teammate Jeff Green had a career-high 37 on 12-21 shooting and 4-5 from 3.

Deron Williams went for 16 assists with ZERO turnovers. Impressive. Most impressive.

And Blake Griffin of course had another massive game, dropping 31 points with 13 rebounds.

CLIPPING ALONG

I went back and forth the entire fourth quarter. Are the Clippers really beating the Spurs, or are the Spurs just playing that bad? After watching Antonio McDyess brick a jumper that may have dented the backboard, Manu Ginobili airball an open 3 and Tim Duncan make two bad passes in traffic, I leaned toward the latter.

But then I watched Blake Griffin, Eric Gordon and even Baron Davis take over late in the game and close things out. So while it was probably a combination of the Spurs poor play and the Clippers doing well, I think the lesson here is to take that despite the still horrid record, these Clips aren't rolling over for anyone.

Griffin posted another stellar night, dropping 31 points, 13 rebounds and four assists, Eric Gordon had 21 points on 8-17 shooting, but it was really Davis who in his return, made the difference. In just 23 minutes, Davis had seven points and 10 assists, and really controlled his young team down the stretch against the veteran Spurs.

Still, it helped that San Antonio shot just 35.6 percent from the floor and missed 21 3-pointers. But that doesn't mean this Clipper win should be overlooked. In a week, the Clips have beaten the Hornets, who at the time owned the league's best record and now the Spurs, who currently sit atop the league. Granted, this makes L.A. just 4-15, but I get a Thunder-ish feeling from these guys. They're young, hungry and learning. They're working hard, have talent and given time, may start figuring out how to win.

Plus, having a piece like Blake Griffin in place helps quite a bit.

ONE OTHER THINGS FROM THAT SPURS GAME

Interesting note: Gregg Popovich sat Tony Parker for the entire fourth quarter, instead playing George Hill. Parker, who was healthy, didn't appear happy on the bench about it. Weird.

GRIFFIN (ALMOST) SMASH

LOTS OF FREE HOOPS IN JERSEY

There were 12 games in the NBA last night. All of them took the traditional 48 minutes to settle the final score. Except one. It took 63 minutes.

The Thunder and Nets played a triple overtime classic Wednesday with Oklahoma City eventually emerging as a 123-120 winner. The last 15 minutes and 1.5 seconds were an entire game in itself.

First, Anthony Morrow hit an awkward 3-pointer to send the game to OT. Then in the first period, the Thunder fought back to even get it to the second frame. In the second overtime, the Nets held a three-point lead with 6.2 seconds left. But an ill-advised Stephen Graham foul on Jeff Green as he was shooting a 3 (which rimmed in and out) put Green on the line where he coolly hit all three freebies. Third OT.

That's when Russell Westbrook took the game over. In the third extra period, Westbrook scored all 13 of OKC's points, two shy of the NBA record for points in an OT.

Kevin Durant sat the game out with a sore knee, so his two buddies picked up the slack. Westbrook finished with 38 points (21 after regulation), a career-high 15 rebounds and nine assists and Green had a career-high 37.

THE Lakers ARE GETTING GOOD AT LOSING

Matt Moore wrote on the Lakers losing a fourth straight and here's a juicy part:
The other trend that the 4-game streak omen is up against? Phil Jackson has never failed to complete a 3-peat. Given the fact that LA has five months to get it right, Andrew Bynum returns in a few weeks, and this team could not care less about the regular season and they're still only losing these games by a handful of buckets, we should probably bet on the latter trend holding up.

But it still should be noted that the Lakers right now? They're not very good at all.

WHIMSY

I was sent this picture yesterday by someone and it must be posted. It's titled, "Jazzketball."


PARTING THOUGHT

The Heat beat up on a bad team yet again, whooping the Pistons 97-72. But commend the Heat for not losing focus the night before the biggun against the Cavs tonight. They dominated from the opening tip and held every Piston starter out of double-figures.

The high scorer for the Heat was LeBron with 18, but really, this game was about the suffocating defense and not who scored what. If we could only figure out why they can't do this against good teams with good players.
Posted on: November 26, 2010 10:35 am
 

Shootaround 11.26.10: Shopping for a forward?

Posted by Royce Young
  • Shaq to WEEI: “This is a great team. The best team I’ve been on. They’ve got a lot of weapons on this team, so on any given night anybody can be the leading scorer. The team’s very unselfish, so the shots are going to drop off and they easily could have shot them and did that but…great game. Great team effort. And now we’ve just got to keep it going.”
  • And the Clips won another game, making that two straight. ClipperBlog: "Perhaps the Clippers players are beginning to realize that they have a rare talent in their midst, an unstoppable force that can leave opponents demoralized and turn around the fortunes of a franchise, its history and curse be damned. Whether that story will be written in the coming months and years remain to be seen. But the first draft of that narrative is beginning to look promising."
  • Sactown Royalty: "We criticize, of course, but does anyone see an easy fix? Re-inserting Beno Udrih for Head would have left Gordon with 40. Moving DeMarcus Cousins into the starting five for Dalembert would have meant Cousins or Landry (who had some feisty back-and-forth with Griffin) would have been in early foul trouble. Putting Omri Casspi into the game between Evans and Greene probably wouldn't have helped force Evans to be more aggressive; the team's ubiquitous dependence on one-on-one play would have been re-emphasized. There are no answers until these players get better."
  • Hamed Haddadi has been charged with assaulting his girlfriend. That's not good.
  • Darren Rovell on LeBron's return to Cleveland: "They joked that when LeBron James returned, they'd make him play in an empty arena. In reality, former fans of the star who left them for Miami have paid top dollar to witness his return to Cleveland next week. It actually might be the most expensive regular season ticket in Cavaliers history. Fans are paying an average of $234 per seat on the secondary market for the Dec. 2 game, according to StubHub That's the highest average price for a non-playoff game for as far back as StubHub's data goes. The previous high was January 2010 when the Lakers came to play in Cleveland. The average price for that game was $202, StubHub's Joellen Ferrer said."
Posted on: November 21, 2010 12:36 pm
 

"Quake" Griffin shakes the Knicks to their core

Postd by Matt Moore

I'm not going to waste your time with prose, analysis, or description Just watch the mayhem Blake Griffin brought upon the world last night.




And that, my friends, is why "Quake" Griffin (as he was coined this morning on Twitter by @Winston_Wolfe ) is the most exciting player in the NBA right now. His defense is atrocious, his awareness needs major upgrades, and his team is wretched beyond belief. But man alive, can he make you holler with his play. Every time I watch these highlights, I recoil in horror. It's like seeing someone get hit by a car.
Posted on: November 19, 2010 8:56 am
Edited on: November 19, 2010 8:58 am
 

Game Changer: 11.19.10: Streamers and snarls

Posted by Royce Young

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: GEORGE KARL MIFFED AND IMPRESSED

By Ben Golliver


It's not every night you see Denver Nuggets coach George Karl storming across the floor as streamers fall, but that's what happened in the Rose Garden on Thursday night after a non-call on a last gasp Arron Afflalo three-point attempt allowed Portland to sneak away with a 86-83 home win. Amid a chaotic scene of cheerleaders, streamers and celebrating players, Karl and guard Chauncey Billups pleaded Denver's case, that Portland guard Wesley Matthews fouled Afflalo on the release, but to no avail.

"Obviously everybody in the building thought it was a foul," Karl told reporters afterwards. "I thought the fans even thought it was a foul. The fans went 'huuuuuhh.' I didn't look at it so I don't know for sure, but it was a tough whistle to get, you don't usually get that on the road, but I thought that was a foul."

Karl said he would send tape of the play to the league office for review but seemed resigned to the loss. "If they just miss it, it's just part of basketball. 

Another part of basketball is injuries, and both Denver and Portland have dealt with their fair share this season. Both teams really only played eight players on Thursday night, although Denver's Melvin Ely saw the court for 30 seconds. Karl said he was impressed by the Blazers, who fought through a tough week with news that center Greg Oden is done for the season with microfracture knee surgery and played without all star guard Brandon Roy on Thursday night. "They're still a very good team," Karl told CBSSports.com. "Every team goes through injuries. [Portland Trail Blazers coach] Nate [McMillan] doesn't cry about it. They're a talented, playoff team with the injuries they have."

Karl's Nuggets held the short-handed Blazers in check defensively for most of the game, but 24 points and 10 rebounds from LaMarcus Aldridge helped put Portland over the top. "I thought we did a hell of a job on [Aldridge] except for one thing: offensive rebounding. He was Pau Gasol'ing us on the tips on the rim, tipping the balls in. He's going to make some shots, but if you take away his offensive rebounds I think probably we defended him as well as I expect us to defend him."

POST-GAME AUDIO FROM GEORGE KARL

GO-GO-GADGET LINES

Wesley Matthews was a beast for Portland. He notched 20 points and 10 rebounds and essentially shot the Blazers back in the game in the first half.

Despite the Suns getting pummeled, Grant Hill still scored 21 points on 8-9 shooting. The old guy just keeps playing well. Send Brandon Roy and Greg Oden to Phoenix, k thanks.

Kind of a weak night for good box scores, so let's give Marcus Camby and his 14 boards a small shout-out.

ORLANDO TRIES TO ONE-UP

It hasn't been a great trip to Florida for the Phoenix Suns. Wednesday, the Heat put a beating on them, basically sending them to a Orlando with their tails between their legs.

And then Thursday against the Magic, the Suns got more of the same.

They played without Steve Nash who sat out with a sore groin. That didn't matter too much as the Suns couldn't score, couldn't stop anybody and basically, couldn't play intelligent basketball.

Phoenix turned the ball over 18 times, went just 3-18 from 3 (remember when they hit 22?) and missed nine free throws. The final score was 105-89, but that only came from a 30-14 fourth quarter for the Suns where Orlando's starters didn't play a minute.

But enough about the Suns. The Magic looked pretty impressive. It was like they watched the Heat whoop Phoenix and said, "Oh yeah? Well watch us!" Dwight Howard was outstanding notching 20 points on 8-9 shooting and showcased a number of his increasingly polished post-game. Jameer Nelson had 12 assists and set up teammates wonderfully. And Orlando had all 11 guys that played score, with even distribution throughout.

It was a total dismantling and something the Magic needed after having a lackluster week. I guess if you need a pick-me-up in Florida, just invite the Suns over.

FACE, Roy Hibbert

Eric Gordon is becoming almost a nightly posterizer. His latest victim was the Indiana big man as Gordon went high and threw down hard.


DON'T MISS

PARTING THOUGHT

Somehow, the Clippers are awful. They lost again, this time falling to Indiana 107-80 which drops them to 1-12. Before the season, this was really kind of unthinkable. In fact, after the Clips' first game, it was unthinkable. They lost the opener, but they looked good. They looked like a team that might be able to surprise some people.

But despite solid play from Blake Griffin, the team just stinks. There isn't a go-to scorer, they don't play defense and the young guys aren't performing all that well. They're extremely young which is a good excuse, but still, one and twelve?

Follow F&R on Twitter at @CBSSportsNBA and check out our RSS feed . This has been your daily edition of the Game Changer.



Posted on: November 16, 2010 9:29 am
 

Shootaround 11.16.10: Cuban says hallelujah

Posted by Royce Young
  • Mark Cuban went on Dallas radio and of course said fun things about the Heat's slow start: "Hallelujah, boys, is that great or what? … How cool is that? Now, they could still turn it around and win out for all that matters, but you're starting to see some of the problems. Any team with a strong, big guy that can score, they're getting abused by. Paul Millsap goes out and pulls a Tracy McGrady. What, Tracy McGrady scored 13 and 30 and Paul Millsap scores 11 in 29 seconds or something like that? They just don't have size to battle. They have the fewest points in the paint of any team and that's tough. … My buddy Dan Gilbert is smiling all the way, too. Again, it's early in the season and you never quite know how it's going to play out, but how glorious."
  • Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman: "So much has been so bad for the Oklahoma City Thunder that the last thing this team needed Monday night was a tough start. But the Thunder found itself in a nightmarish start when Utah point guard Deron Williams promptly splashed his first three 3-point attempts through the net, opening a nine-point lead less than three minutes into the game. And with the way OKC has underachieved all season defensively and sputtered at times offensively, there was little to suggest the Thunder could dig itself out of a hole in one of the NBA's toughest buildings. After securing a hard-fought 115-108 victory over the Jazz, however, the Thunder showed there is at least one characteristic from last year's lovable 50-win team that has indeed spilled over into this season of inconsistency. Pride."
  • Lisa Dillman of the Los Angeles Times: "The University of Clippers suffered a major blow to their NCAA chances on Monday night. (Well, there always is strength of schedule.) Kidding aside, when you present a starting lineup consisting of five players all still possessing NCAA eligibility, it's always going to hold an element of peril and high risk. The Clippers' starters were two 20-year-olds (Eric Bledsoe and Al-Farouq Aminu) two 21-year-olds (Blake Griffin and Eric Gordon) and one 'veteran,' 22-year-old DeAndre Jordan. So this team might look terrific in March in the NCAA tournament, but this is, for better or worse, the NBA in the opening month.
  • Tayshaun Prince and John Kuester went after each other last night. Vincent Goodwill of The Detroit News writes: "On the way to the bench, Kuester and Prince had words. Then Prince slammed his towel down, yelling at Kuester and walked away from the huddle. Kuester responded in kind, and had to be restrained by assistant coach Darrell Walker. Kuester and Prince continued jawing throughout the stoppage in play. After the timeout, Kuester attempted to walk over to Prince and continue their discussion, but Walker stepped in again."
Posted on: November 14, 2010 12:51 am
Edited on: August 14, 2011 8:43 pm
 

Utah Jazz come back for fifth win in a week

The Utah Jazz completed five straight double-digit come-from-behind victories in one week. Posted by Ben Golliverderon-williams-jazz 

It's been one heck of a week for the Utah Jazz, who played five games in seven days and managed to win every single one of them. A 5-0 week is always special, but you won't find many like this in the NBA. Let's break it down for a minute. The Jazz defeated the Los Angeles Clippers, Miami Heat, Orlando Magic, Atlanta Hawks and Charlotte Bobcats.  The Jazz defeated the Clippers at home and then reeled off four straight road victories. In the Heat, Magic and Hawks you have three surefire playoff teams, and the Bobcats should be in contention as well when all is said and done. Adding a degree of difficulty, the wins over Miami and Orlando came on a back-to-back, as did the victories over Atlanta and Charlotte. Ridiculous. To make the feat even more impressive, none of the five games was a runaway victory that would have allowed the Jazz some time to rest their key players. On the contrary, the Jazz edged the Clippers by two points in double-overtime, squeaked past the Heat by two points in overtime, pulled away from the Magic at the end for a 10 point win, slipped past the Hawks by four points and topped the Bobcats by a single point. Add it all up and that's a average margin of victory of just 3.8 points. But, wait, there's more. All five victories came in come-from-behind fashion. Double-digit come-from-behind fashion.
  • The Clippers led the Jazz by 18 points before Utah came back.
  • The Heat led the Jazz by 22 points before Utah came back.
  • The Magic led the Jazz by 18 points before Utah came back. 
  • The Hawks led the Jazz by 11 points before Utah came back.
  • The Bobcats led the Jazz by 19 points before Utah came back.
That's just insane. Utah Jazz all star point guard Deron Williams joked to the Salt Lake Tribune that the comebacks were all part of the plan.
And Utah’s confidence is so high after five consecutive comebacks that Williams answered the first question during his postgame interview by joking about his team’s recent penchant for late-game heroics after climbing out of deep, early holes.
“It’s just what we like to do. It’s our plan,” Williams said. “Just let teams get up us on 20 and then come back on ‘em.”
Yuk away, Deron. You earned it with that week. To celebrate, the Jazz get a single day off on Sunday before hosting MVP candidate Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder, winners of three of their last four, in Utah on Monday night.
Posted on: November 10, 2010 10:09 am
 

Kaman to miss 2-3 weeks with ankle injury

Posted by Royce Young

Another hit for the sliding Clippers. This time, it's starting center and All-Star Chris Kaman.

Kaman rolled his ankle against the Hornets Tuesday and is expected to miss two to three weeks because of the injury. Kaman underwent X-rays, which showed no structural damage.

Kaman told the L.A. Times after the game, "We just ran one of our plays we only run a couple of times a game, and Rasual [Butler] threw the ball up there a little bit, trying to lead me to the basket," Kaman said. "I think Chris Paul tried to come on the weak side to try to steal it and put his foot right where my foot was supposed to go. Basically, I just rolled my ankle right over right then and it was pretty painful for a second, and then it kind of let up. I've rolled my ankle about 10, 12 times in the past eight years. I knew it was going to be a good one."

DeAndre Jordan will likely start in Kaman's spot with potentially Blake Griffin seeing a little time at center.

Kaman's averaging 12.7 points and 8.6 rebounds per game this season which is down from last season and a little disappointing considering what Griffin is adding next to him. Kaman's shot has been off and he's been forcing things much more. He's taking more shots, missing more shots and having trouble getting settled in to the flow of the game.

The Clippers are already slipping away from any preseason aspirations and Kaman's injury will just about seal the deal on it. But without Kaman in the lineup, there's an opportunity there for Jordan to develop a little while also letting Griffin get more time in multiple block positions.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com