The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant

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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#241 » by LKN » Wed Sep 25, 2019 12:50 pm

Official wrote:
ClipsFanSince98 wrote:
He's an elite rebounder for his position and steals O rebounds (averaged 8 rpg in the playoffs), has a 3 to 1 A/TO ratio. He doesn't force any shots, which is why most of it is spot up, open shots. I'm not sure why that's a negative. I wouldn't say he "can't score", so much as I'd say he's not a great scorer and is treated as more of a 5th option type on offense. He has had games where he catches fire from deep and gets some layups mixed in. Again, he's far from a star player but he's a positive on both ends. That's all you can expect from your 6th best player.


Being an elite rebounder at PG is a relatively low value proposition. And no he cant score or create. He has pretty much has the lowest USG rate of any point guard in the NBA and that is for good reason. He essentially stands in the corner and shoots a low volume of threes. The guy only scored over 20 points in a game 1 TIME last year. Again 1 TIME - you are not a good scorer - end of discussion.

They also have ZUBAC in the starting lineup. ZUBAC who couldn't even start over McGee on the Lakers. Those that go around acting like ZUBAC showed promise would be no different than saying Alex Caruso showed promise. Hell he had more 20 point games than Patrick Beverly last year.

My whole point in this is I just don't see this great depth on the Clippers. I see the media and fan base overrating their entire team.

Lou Williams - great six man....Kuzma inefficient scorer. Like WTH - Lou Williams is just as inefficient.

Montrezl Harrell - 16ppg/6rg - great six man.....Dwight Howard last full season - 16.6 and 12rpg - team killer and sucks.

It is just comical at this point.


Lou Williams is a clearly better offensive player than Kuzma. That being said - he's a bad defender (then again Kuzma was also a bad defender last year...although probably not quite as bad as Williams). You can't just look at these guys compare TS and call it a day. Williams has a better ORTG relative to the team ORTG.... and WAY better AST%, much better turnover economy, etc

Also there's actually a pretty big difference between scoring 35.5 pts/100 at 554 TS and scoring 26.3 pts/100 at 546 TS.

That being said - if either of these guys is any more than a 3rd scorer this year their team is likely in big trouble :). Williams has a lot of regular season value in that he can run the offense when the stars are off the floor (allowing more rest/load management/etc). Kuzma just isn't that kind of player. Note that I could see a scenario where Kuzma ends up being more valuable as a playoff piece than Williams if he can play well off the ball.

Also to be fair - Kuzma is 23 and Williams is 32 so it wouldn't be a huge surprise if Kuzma got better and Williams got worse.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#242 » by LKN » Wed Sep 25, 2019 12:53 pm

Not Suave Rico wrote:
Official wrote:
Of course they had strong bench scoring if two of your best scorers and higher minutes played last year come off the bench and the players they are replacing average around 10ppg or less. Hey I start PB who scores like 7ppg and his replacement is Lou William's who scores 20ppg - no duh you have strong bench scoring. That is just a rotation design that makes your bench scoring look better. No other team dones that so of course their bench scoring is high - like what the spurs did with Manu.

Part of the beauty of the Clippers rotation is the balance between the two units. The first unit features two of the best ISO players in the league. They are good for about 50-55 points a night combined.

Then the starters rest while Lou/Trez come in and just destroy the other teams second unit.


I have some doubts about the usefulness of Lou Williams in the postseason (other than in very limited minutes... where he could have good value if he can help product a decisive bench advantage when the other teams best is off the floor for 8 minutes or whatever). However, he does seem quite valuable in the regular season - esp given how stacked the west is. If the Clippers bench can routinely destroy the other teams second unit then Kawhi and PG will get more rest. load management, etc opportunities.

Given that there are like 6 teams in the west that have a somewhat realistic shot at the finals I think that type of bench advantage could be very important in the race for seeding.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#243 » by Official » Thu Sep 26, 2019 1:54 pm

LKN wrote:
Lou Williams is a clearly better offensive player than Kuzma. That being said - he's a bad defender (then again Kuzma was also a bad defender last year...although probably not quite as bad as Williams). You can't just look at these guys compare TS and call it a day. Williams has a better ORTG relative to the team ORTG.... and WAY better AST%, much better turnover economy, etc

Also there's actually a pretty big difference between scoring 35.5 pts/100 at 554 TS and scoring 26.3 pts/100 at 546 TS.

That being said - if either of these guys is any more than a 3rd scorer this year their team is likely in big trouble :). Williams has a lot of regular season value in that he can run the offense when the stars are off the floor (allowing more rest/load management/etc). Kuzma just isn't that kind of player. Note that I could see a scenario where Kuzma ends up being more valuable as a playoff piece than Williams if he can play well off the ball.

Also to be fair - Kuzma is 23 and Williams is 32 so it wouldn't be a huge surprise if Kuzma got better and Williams got worse.


Your third point basically illustrates what I am getting at.

Lou Williams is better at creating offense and for himself. But it should be notated that Lou Williams had the 4th highest USG rate of any player in the NBA last year and scores 70% of this points off non assisted baskets. I would not expect the same result with PG and Leonard on your team. As Lou Williams USG rate goes down so will his PPG making him less effective. There is a reason he has bounced around the league.

I would take a player scoring 18.7ppg with a USG rate of 23.8% who is assisted on 70% of his FG as a third scorer vs a player scoring 20ppg with a USG rate of 32.4% who is assisted on only 30% of his FG - all on similar efficiency.

Yes Lou's scoring rate is higher but of course it is - he dominates the ball.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#244 » by TerryTate » Mon Sep 30, 2019 1:17 pm

ClipsFanSince98 wrote:
TerryTate wrote:
ClipsFanSince98 wrote:
You're dead wrong about everything Clippers related. For one Kawhi isn't on load management. Kawhi, Doc, Frank have already openly said this. He will play every game he's healthy. All parties have said Kawhi was on such strict load management last year because he went into the season injured and hadn't played the year before. There are no plans to rest him. Doc said health is priority, but he's not going to just sit him due to "load management". Clippers beat writers are saying the coaches expect Kawhi to play 70+ potentially.

Then secondly PG was NEVER facing 1-2 months out. That was a random Bill Simmons myth that the rest of media ran with. His timeline for grade 2 rotator cuff tear was always 5-6 months. That's Oct 7th-Nov 7th. Missing no games to missing maybe 5-6 games. He's already shoulder pressing 50s in each hand and on the court doing everything with the team besides contact scrimmaging. Not sure on what planet you come up with 1-2 months missed. Honestly with how far ahead PG looks right now I would not be surprised if he goes through training camp, sits most of preseason but is ready for the opener.

I'm glad you believe the BS that they say to the media..... but it's nice to be objectively thinking instead taking everything face value.
Rivers said this two days ago....... "Rivers said he doesn’t expect the Clippers will employ as “aggressive” a load management plan with Leonard as the Raptors did last season". That kind of implies that they will be load managing him.
Clippers beat writers..... expect him to play 70 games? Kawhi, hit > 70 games, 2 out of this 8 years in the NBA. Between the clipper beat writers opinion and the "light" load management, I'd say 70+ games is going to be hard.

Anything I've googled on PG injury has said "undisclosed" timeline with minimum being out all of October. I mean why rush him back? 2-3 extra weeks off isn't going to hurt the Clips. Whatever it's your franchise.... It's not like with the Clippers talent that they'd be <.500 without Kawhi or PG. I'm gonna reference the Markennen injury from last year. They also said early november mid summer, and then it shifted to Christmas. I mean things drag out...

It's not like I'm trying to discredit your team. I'm just being realistic.


Are you really wanting to cherry pick against a Clippers fan with a vested interest in this, who is literally obsessed with his team? Not a smart road to go down. Kawhi in his press conference is the first one to say he's not on "load management" and will take it game by game. As for last week Doc/Frank emphasized that the reason for aggressive load management in Toronto was because he went into the season injured to begin with and hadn't played the year before much. My personal feeling is he KNEW he didn't plan on sticking around in Toronto for the long haul and didn't want to jeopardize his future in free agency etc.

Also you admit they won't have as aggressive of a load management plan with him... yet have an issue with me saying a plan of 70? Isn't that just 8 or 9 more games than Toronto played him? In a season where he's even healthier? Not sure what you are picking at here. So you post those quotes, then fight me over an 8 game difference, despite those quotes saying his rest won't be as aggressive lol?

As for PG... simple logic, deduction and research go a long way. The prognosis was ALWAYS to assess him going into training camp, but we can use a little fact finding and piece this together, so I'll explain a little more clearly how I came to my conclusions.

1. Paul George had surgery for a grade 2 rotator cuff tear on May 7th. The timeline for full recovery for this injury in every medical publication I can find is 5-6 months, which INCLUDES strength training rehab and conditioning. He then had a 2nd surgery to repair a minor labrum tear on the other shoulder June 11th (at which point Dr's stated did NOT affect the original timeline from the rotator cuff tear). The 5-6 month timeline is October 7th-Nov 7th range. Either missing 0 games, or missing 8-9 games (depending if he plays on the actual 7th or next game on 11th).

Paul George had successful surgery on his left shoulder to repair a tear in his labrum, per a Thunder spokesperson. Recovery timetable is the same it was when he had surgery on his right shoulder a few weeks ago — reassessed around the start of training camp.

— Royce Young (@royceyoung) June 11, 2019

George has been in the training facility practicing and weightlifting for nearly three weeks, as we’ve seen on Instagram. His on-court work has primarily consisted of shooting and finishing-at-the-rim exercises, one-on-one drills to keep his isolation skills sharp and free throws. He has yet to return to full-contact action. But that hasn’t prevented from being in the gym every day, including making late-night trips with Leonard and Lou Williams. “He’s made great progress,” Frank said. “He works his tail off. He’s been terrific. We have a great performance, health and wellness staff. … We put it in their hands. He works extremely hard. He’s extremely excited and motivated. I’m sure you guys have seen some of the stuff that’s been posted. He gets after it.”

-The Athletic

2. If you look at the actual exercises he's doing, and you know even a basic amount of physiology or medicine, you can tell how close he is. He's shoulder pressing heavy weights unassisted for the last few weeks now. He's getting up hundreds of shots. He's dunking hard. Literally the ONLY thing he's NOT doing yet is full contact play with teammates. That's simply a formality because he hasn't been cleared yet (he's expected to see a Dr this week before training camp). The idea that he could still be 2 months away is asinine. I'd literally bet $500 right now that he suits up in October, even if he misses preseason.

3. The source of the random "PG is going to miss months" was a random Bill Simmons tidbit, in which he gave literally ZERO evidence, stated zero source and admitted it was just a haunch or gut feeling. Shortly after that, all of the media started randomly parroting this, also without any sources. Woj for example has never reported on this.


I'm just gonna say .... I told you so.
Exactly what I said was going to happen... happened.
https://basketball.realgm.com/wiretap/255540/Paul-George-To-Miss-All-Of-Training-Camp-Targeting-November-ish-Return
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#245 » by hoosierdaddy34 » Sat Jan 18, 2020 7:57 pm

hoosierdaddy34 wrote:I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, both teams have flaws and will be active in the buyout season.

Lakers have perimeter defense issues. Also finding a starting 1 that can defend and play off LeBron/AD.

The Clippers aren’t very good inside. I don’t see Zubac, Harrell and Green getting it done. Also have only one average level passer for their position on the team, PG. They are a poor passing team at this point. I have a feeling they are going to be a heavy ISO team which becomes a lot easier to stop in the playoffs. They need a more traditional point guard that can be a playmaker for others and also hit a jumper.

So I expect both these teams to have new faces by March and this question will be a lot more clear at that time.


I just want to congratulations to “Executives around the league” who have completely changed their view point and come around to exactly what I said in September.

https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2871835-how-aggressive-should-la-clippers-be-at-the-nba-trade-deadline
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#246 » by zimpy27 » Sat Jan 18, 2020 8:05 pm

The only team that look like beating the Lakers in a playoff series right now (if healthy) are the Clippers. But typical for LeBron teams is to change their strategy in the playoffs, so it's hard to tell.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#247 » by Up-And-Coming » Sat Jan 18, 2020 8:14 pm

zimpy27 wrote:The only team that look like beating the Lakers in a playoff series right now (if healthy) are the Clippers. But typical for LeBron teams is to change their strategy in the playoffs, so it's hard to tell.


Yes, from what I recall, Lebron team's strategy changes because Lebron tends to increase his aggressiveness in the playoffs both defensively and offensively. A lot of times in the regular it seems like Lebron is being too passive and distributing too much and cruising defensively. He seems to take on a bigger load getting his own offensively although it still remains to be seen if he has enough left in the tank at his age to do it throughout the entirety of the playoffs.

I also wouldn't write off the Bucks. If we are basing our opinion on the games played this season, the Bucks have actually been more impressive against the Lakers and presented a bigger matchup problem by taking all the Laker's interior defenders to the perimeter as they knocked down 3's at a high clip.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#248 » by King4Day » Sat Jan 18, 2020 8:29 pm

Really too early for a bump like this but the post from the OP shows they didn't know about the regular season wins and are referring to playoff success. Let's wait till the season is over to decide.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#249 » by hoosierdaddy34 » Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:18 pm

King4Day wrote:Really too early for a bump like this but the post from the OP shows they didn't know about the regular season wins and are referring to playoff success. Let's wait till the season is over to decide.


If you saw, I was replying to one of my old comments because Eric Pincus did an article today that “league executives” said the same thing that I did back then.

Under the bump rules it said “if new information comes available” and I felt this article fell under that premise. The article talked very much about the Clippers roster issues against bigger teams in the playoffs.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#250 » by mademan » Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:25 pm

zimpy27 wrote:The only team that look like beating the Lakers in a playoff series right now (if healthy) are the Clippers. But typical for LeBron teams is to change their strategy in the playoffs, so it's hard to tell.


Cmon bro. Let's not disrespect the Bucks. These dudes have stomped every top team save for the Sixers
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#251 » by Mamba4Goat » Sat Jan 18, 2020 10:35 pm

I'm happily agreeing with OP still. LAC>>LAL by a decent margin.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#252 » by Sofia » Sat Jan 18, 2020 10:45 pm

Eric Pincus is a bum
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#253 » by Dr Aki » Sat Jan 18, 2020 10:55 pm

still not convinced, need Collison and another wing defender in the POs
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#254 » by axeman23 » Sat Jan 18, 2020 11:25 pm

Yogatti wrote:
mademan wrote:I too think AD is overrated, but at least AD's play has held up in the playoffs. PG has too often completely underperformed. A few good games against the Big 3 Heat doesnt rewrite his poor playoff history.


How exactly has AD's play help up in the playoffs?

This is his playoff resume.

2015: Swept by the Warriors
2018: Lost 4-1 against the Warriors

Paul George

ECF: Pushed the BIG 3 Heat to 6 games and 7 games in 2013/2014 in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Paul George has had more success in the playoffs that AD. AD rarely makes the playoffs



No, that's the PELICANS playoff record, vs the PACERS record when PG was there. Also, I didn't notice PG's OKC playoff stats in your post, why is that? Oh, that's right. Two 1st round exits, neither against the champs unlike both of Davis' with the Pelicans...
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#255 » by GYK » Sun Jan 19, 2020 12:01 am

as mentioned the Clippers look like a strong contender to beating the Lakers. however Lebron teams usually change strategy in the playoffs. I would imagine they eventually have their 5 out lineup against the Clippers. switching on the worse defender and going from their. they usually are big and should continue this in the regular season, as it works and it is practice for eventually facing Giannis. but for everyone else the 5 out lineup will be their death sentence. people forget the offensive rating the Cavs had in the Finals. it was historic.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#256 » by Gooner » Sun Jan 19, 2020 12:04 am

GYK wrote:as mentioned the Clippers look like a strong contender to beating the Lakers. however Lebron teams usually change strategy in the playoffs. I would imagine they eventually have their 5 out lineup against the Clippers. switching on the worse defender and going from their. they usually are big and should continue this in the regular season, as it works and it is practice for eventually facing Giannis. but for everyone else the 5 out lineup will be their death sentence. people forget the offensive rating the Cavs had in the Finals. it was historic.


Forget about contender, Clips look better than Lakers. They have an answer for any possible lineup.
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#257 » by IgorK » Sun Jan 19, 2020 12:14 am

Nothing has changed. Clippers are still the favorites to win it all. Perhaps not HEAVY favorites, but favorites nonetheless (and definitely over Lakers who don't seem to care about the Clippers as much as the Clippers care about the Lakers).
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#258 » by TheNewEra » Sun Jan 19, 2020 12:27 am

Clips haven’t been healthy it’s going to take time. Zu ax has had pretty strong matchups with most of the playoff centers in the league and 2nd game against the Bucks he was only a -2 for the game.

Only concern would be health and if the team believes Harrell would stay under a reasonable contract. If Harrell walks for nothing it’s a loss but they probably just give some of his old money split between Green and a cheaper Harkless. Then look for a legit cheap C looking to ring chase to backup Zu
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Re: The Athletic: NBA execs around the league expect the gap between Clippers and Lakers to be significant 

Post#260 » by Gooner » Sun Jan 19, 2020 1:06 am

Clippers clearly have more. They have Lou Williams and Montrzel coming of the bench, that's the biggest difference.

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