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Portland spoiled the Clippers’ return to Los Angeles with a good old fashioned blowout.
The Portland Trail Blazers, led by Damian Lillard, defeated the Los Angeles Clippers 134-106 at home Sunday, securing their second win of the preseason. The Clippers fell to 1-2 in exhibition play with the loss.
The hometown squad jumped out to a 15-3 lead to start the game, delighting fans. Rookie guard Teodosić then dislocated his left pinkie finger, and left the court with Clippers’ trainer Jason Powell. Clipper curse in the preseason?
Milos Teodosic just went to locker room holding his hand. He left with Clippers head athletic trainer Jasen Powell— Brad Turner (@BA_Turner) October 8, 2017
Luckily, Teodosić’s injury was not serious and he was able to return to the game in the second quarter. He did not appear any worse for the wear, finishing the game with 15 points off 5 for 12 shooting, including four 3-point buckets.
*makes three* pic.twitter.com/jiqClSKCxd
Teodosić also contributed 3 assists.
Despite Teodosić’s offensively charged performance, the Clippers never really had a chance in this contest. Scoring was close in the first and third quarters, but the Blazers outscored the Clippers by 17 points in the second quarter and 16 points in the fourth quarter to seal the deal.
A few takeaways:
- Teodosić was looking to shoot, and seemed to find a groove in this match-up, particularly with the 3-ball.
- Beverley did not fare well tonight, going 0-5 from the field. He ended the game with 1 point. Whether Beverley and Teodosić can hit double figures in the same game has yet to be seen; their chemistry is something to watch. They are likely choice for the Clippers regular season starting backcourt, and it would be nice to have them combine for 20+ points per game. Bevereley did contribute 6 assists, including this nice lob to Willie Reed for the slam dunk.
Sunday Lobs. pic.twitter.com/92srmgiju3— LA Clippers (@LAClippers) October 8, 2017
- The Clippers continued to demonstrate very balanced scoring. Six Clippers were in double figures for Los Angeles: Griffin (15p), Jordan (12), Teodosic (15), Sindarius Thornwell (14), Williams (11) and Jawun Evans (11).
- Rebounding continued to be an issue. The Clippers were outrebounded 58-49. Jordan led the Clippers with 14 boards.
- Defense was sorely lacking. The Clippers had a defensive rating of 126.3 for the game, as compared to the Blazers’ 99.9. Four Blazers hit double figures: Lillard led all scorers with 35 in 26 minutes, CJ McCollum added 20 points, Moe Harkless scored 16 on 6-for-6 shooting off the bench, and Jusuf Nurkic added 13 points and 9 rebounds before fouling out. Looks like Defense is going to the Clippers’ Achilles heel this season.
The Clippers next preseason game is at Staples Center in Los Angeles on Thursday, October 12 at 7:30 PM PT against the Sacramento Kings.
The loss of Danilo Gallinari and Austin Rivers to injuries is what’s most unsettling for the Clippers.
Gallinari’s sprained left foot (which forced him to miss his first exhibition game Sunday against the Portland Trail Blazers) and Rivers’ strained right glute (which forced him to miss his second...
Angelenos will get their first look at Serbian superstar Miloš Teodosić Sunday afternoon as the Clippers take on the Trail Blazers at home.
The Los Angeles Clippers (1-1) play their first home preseason game Sunday afternoon at the Staples Center, taking on the Portland Trail Blazers (1-1). Here’s what to look out for during this west coast match-up.
Where: Staples Center, Los Angeles California
When: 12:30 PM PT
How to Watch: This game is not televised.
How to Listen: Rip City Radio 620, AM 570 LA SportsProjected Starting Lineups:
Marvelous Miloš Teodosić: It’s official. Los Angeles is in love with Miloš Teodosić. Teodosić’s unparalleled passing abilities were on full display during the Clippers’ first two preseason games, leaving many to ask, “CP who?” The 30-year-old rookie contributed 13 assists in 49 minutes against the Toronto Raptors in Hawaii last week, including many highlight-worthy moments. Lob City is definitely not dead in Los Angeles!
Razzle-dazzle aside, Teodosić needs to improve his conditioning. At times during the Toronto games he looked winded. This may have contributed to turnovers; he had a total of 5. Teodosić also needs to shoot the ball more. Against Toronto, he had more assists (13) than field goal attempts (8). Last season, Teodosić averaged 16.1 points and 6.8 assists in 29 games for CSKA Moscow. He shot 44.4 percent from the field, 38.1 percent from beyond the arc, and 89.7 percent from the free throw line. The Clippers would like to get similar numbers from Teodosić this season. He needs to find his groove.
Doc Rivers recently spoke to the media about Teodosić, commenting that the Serbian superstar has a “great shot” and is “way better” than what fans have seen to date. Expect the “pass-first” point guard to look for more of his own scoring opportunities against Portland.
Team Chemistry: Austin Rivers’ continued absence due to injury gives head coach Doc Rivers more opportunities to play with rotations, and observe player chemistry with new guards Patrick Beverely, Teodosić and Lou Williams.
Beverely, Teodosić and Williams are each talented perimeter players worthy of a starting role for the Clippers’ franchise. Of the three, Williams is probably least likely to rise to the occasion. He is most appropriately utilized off the bench, in the same way Jamal Crawford was in past years. Both share a penchant for scoring and an aversion to playing defense.
Beverley, and Teodosić, however, are each capable of starting at either the point or two-guard position, allowing for multiple possibilities in the backcourt. Beverley is the stronger defender of the two, and somewhat underrated as a point guard, but Teodosić has demonstrated that he can run the uptempo Clippers offense in a way that maximizes the athleticism and talents of bigs Blake Griffin and Deandre Jordan.
At this point in time, Beverley and Rivers appear to have a lock on regular season starting slots. However, Doc may want to revisit the issue. It would be ill-advised to make a final decision on starters before fully considering the chemistry of the various line-ups available. The Clippers have a lot of talent to chose from.
Of course, the Trail Blazers are a perfect franchise against which to compare guard performance. Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum are one of the stronger backcourts in the league. Both players are averaging double figures in the preseason (17 and 12.5 points per game, respectively), and combined they are averaging 9.5 assists per game. The Clippers’ guards will undoubtedly be challenged on both ends of the floor in this match-up.
Balanced Scoring: One of the Clippers most glaring issues in the last 5 years was the absence of a consistent 3rd scoring option to complement Griffin and former point guard Chris Paul. That problem is not anticipated to continue with the current roster, particularly with the franchise’s move towards a faster paced offense with increased ball movement. The Clippers have five players averaging double figures so far this preseason: Beverley (10), Gallinari (14), Griffin (17.5), Jordan (10.5), and Williams (13). Johnson is not far behind averaging 9 points per game. Rivers and Teodosić are also scorers, both averaging double figures last year, and are expected to contribute significantly to the Clippers’ offense. Expect at least four players in double figures for the Clippers against Portland.
Rebounding: Rebounding, and in-particular offensive rebounding, has been an on-going struggle for the Clippers. The squad was out-rebounded in both games against the Raptors last week, and gave up many second chance scoring opportunities as a result. With Jusuf Nurkic in the paint for the Trail Blazers Sunday, the Clippers are going to have to do a better job boxing out and hitting the boards. The 7-foot Nurkic has been effective offensively for the Trail Blazers, averaging 14 points and 4.5 rebounds per game in preseason, and could create serious problems for the Clippers frontcourt.
All things considered, rebounding will be the key to this game.
On the first day of practice in Hawaii, Clippers assistant coach Brendan O’Connor, who has the task of establishing the team’s defensive identity, explained their philosophy.
“We want to be a team that doesn’t give up layups and corner threes,” O’Connor said.
Achieving a strong defensive presence...
What five goals should be set for Los Angeles Clippers’ star big man DeAndre Jordan in the 2017-18 NBA season? DeAndre Jordan and the Los Angeles Clippers are set to open the 2017-18 season with the start of a new era. After trading Chris Paul this past offseason, Jordan and Blake Griffin are the faces […]
On their first day back at their practice facility in Playa Vista after nine days in Hawaii for training camp, the Clippers are dealing with a rash of injuries.
The latest injury was to starting forward Danilo Gallinari, who suffered a sprained left foot during the second exhibition game Tuesday...
The LA Clippers will host an Open Practice on Tuesday, Oct. 10. at USC’s Galen Center
The Clippers left us, here in Los Angeles, to play a few preseason games in Hawaii. But, on Tuesday, they are returning to continue their preseason training back in their hometown — and they are inviting Clippers Nation to come watch.October 6, 2017
According to Clippers.com, here is how the night will play out:
- 5:45pm: Doors open to fans
- 6:00pm: Practice begins
- 7:00pm: Event ends
The event will also include performances by Chuck the Condor and the Clippers Spirit. I suppose everyone in the organization can use a few extra reps before the season takes off.
Fans will enjoy the show for free, although space will be limited and will be available on a first come, first serve basis.