Tag:Al Farouq-Aminu
Posted on: December 14, 2011 7:53 pm
Edited on: December 15, 2011 1:41 pm
  •  
 

Grade The Trade: Clippers get their man, CP3

By Matt Moore

You only get a shot at Chris Paul once. That's it. This opportunity will not come again, and honestly, a chance at a player of his caliber only comes along once every generation. But the trade -- as reported by Ken Berger of CBSSports.com -- that the Clippers pulled sending Eric Gordon, Al-Farouq Aminu, Chris Kaman, and a first-round pick to New Orleans for the best pure point guard in the league isn't about that. It's about what fits best with the future of the franchise. And the future of the franchise is Blake Griffin.

Sure, you want shooters for the kickout, someone to take the pressure off Griffin. But you can get those. Shooters abound. What don't abound are top level point guards who understand the pick-and-roll as well as any guard in the league. That's CP3. That's Chris Paul. Griffin will benefit more from Paul than he will from Gordon, and that was the kicker in this deal. While the haul for the Hornets is not only acceptable, but worlds better than the platter proposed in the original rejected trade, the gain for the Clippers is too great. They're in a position to win now, win in the future, win for the next decade.

CP3 traded to the Clippers

You have to keep Blake Griffin at all costs. The risk is too great that the team won't develop with Griffin, will stall out, and then watch as he departs, potentially to their neighbor at Staples. But this? This is a realignment. The Clippers have a shot, albeit a slim one, at changing the status quo that the Clippers are losers and the Lakers are winners. The Lakers didn't get Chris Paul. The Clippers did.

There's talk that Chris Paul may leave in two years (it's widely expected that part of the agreement involves Paul opting in for the 2012-2013 season and becoming a free agent in the summer of 2013 vs. next summer). That the Clippers could be left with nothing.

But you take that risk. You gamble that CP3-Billups (that move looks a lot better)-Caron Butler-Griffin-DeAndre Jordan is enough to compete, with an extra year to build around them, now as a top free agent position. You risk all of that because if you can't win enough with that group to convince Paul and Griffin to stay together, nothing will. No more aiming for the playoffs, for aiming for respectability, for trying to just be decent.

The Clippers have shot for the moon. The worst case scenario is the most exciting two years in the history of the Los Angeles Clippers. Greatness isn't made by being conservative; fortune favors the bold.

The Clippers made the bold move, and now they have Chris Paul.

Look up, there go the Clips.

Grade: A+



Posted on: September 23, 2010 12:13 pm
Edited on: September 23, 2010 12:15 pm
 

Preseason Primers: Clippers

Posted by Royce Young

Coming in to last season, there were higher hopes than usual for the Clippers. Top pick Blake Griffin was on the squad and Baron Davis had supposedly gotten in shape and was eager to play. But then Griffin was injured, missed the whole year and Davis stopped caring in January. But this year, they get a do-over. They're next in our Preseason Primer series.

Training camp site:
Los Angeles, CA

Training camp starts: Sept. 28

Key additions: Blake Griffin (back from injury), Ryan Gomes (free agent), Al Farouq-Aminu (draft)

Key subtractions: Steve Blake (free agent), Travis Outlaw (free agent), Drew Gooden (free agent), Brian Skinner (just kidding)

Likely starting lineup: Baron Davis, PG; Eric Gordon, SG; Ryan Gomes, SF; Blake Griffin, PF; Chris Kaman, C

Player to watch: Blake Griffin. Remember him? Yeah, this guy? Supposedly, he's back to his old, dunk-on-your-face self. With a full season already under his belt in which he didn't play, you can bet he's hungry. Griffin is a tremendous talent that's been compared to players like Karl Malone and Carlos Boozer. He's going to be ready and he's going to be a monster.

Injury watch: Well, I guess this is going to be pretty much the same as "Player to watch."

Camp battles: The Clippers' roster is pretty close to completely set, but if there's one interesting battle to watch it's at small forward. The Clips took Al Farouq-Aminu in the lottery and plan for him to be a small forward scorer. They also signed Ryan Gomes in the offseason. Aminu could potentially beat out Gomes for the starting spot, especially because the Clippers have an eye toward the future right now. More than likely Gomes has the job, but if you're looking for a position competition to watch, that's the one.

Biggest strength: Starting five. On paper, as Rodney Stuckey would say, it doesn't look that bad. Baron Davis, Eric Gordon (who was fantastic in Turkey), Gomes/Aminu, Griffin and All-Star Chris Kaman. That's a pretty quality unit right there. They probably lack that go-to scorer, but there's enough divvied up among Davis, Kaman, Gordon and Griffin that the Clips should be able to put the ball in the basket.

Glaring weakness: Defense, experience and depth. Last season, the Clippers ranked near the bottom of the league in defensive efficiency (22nd). (They actually ranked lower in offensive efficiency, but I'm banking on that improving with Griffin.) Baron Davis has never been a great defender and Kaman is a score-first center.

They're extremely young with Griffin, Gordon, Aminu, backup point guard Eric Bledsoe and DeAndre Jordan. So this group is youthful.

As for depth, DeAndre Jordan is their backup 5 at this moment. So yeah, that's not good. And there's no one behind him. If Kaman gets in foul trouble of has an injury, DeAndre Jordan is seeing big time minutes. Again, not good.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com