Tag:Los Angeles Clippers
Posted on: December 23, 2011 10:58 am

The Lakers are not a fan of Lob City

Posted by Royce Young

Matt Barnes doesn't get along with a lot of people. It's kind of been his thing in the NBA during his eight NBA seasons. He's an enforcer, a goon, a tough-guy -- whatever you want to call him. He tells it like it is and then takes that act on to the court. Remember, he punched a guy in a pro-am game this summer.

In the Lakers second preseason game he gave Blake Griffin a nice little shove for apparently no reason and did his fair share of talking. Why? Because he's not a fan of Lob City. Via ESPN LA:

"They have a lot of reason to be excited, but all the celebration after dunks and all that kind of stuff, I mean, I just kind of think it looks amazing and it makes 'SportsCenter,' but I mean, let's just play basketball ... They act like they won the dunk contest after every dunk," Barnes said. "So, as players, people aren't going to tolerate that."

I think Barnes has things confused. They don't act like they won a dunk contest, it just looks like it because Lob City's dunks are kind of ridiculous. He probably just forgot what all that looks like playing for the Lakers where the guy with the most hops on the roster is probably some D-Leaguer that's getting waived this week.

Pau Gasol was frustrated with the Clippers as well and you're going to love his reason why.

"I think we were upset that they were flopping a little too much," he said.

That's right. Pau Gasol was unhappy with someone flopping. It really is a new Los Angeles. Barnes took the baton and added onto that, specifically about Griffin.

"He's an amazing athlete and an amazing player but he does flop a lot," Barnes said. "You're too big and too strong to be doing that. Then he wants to talk.

"... He's a special athlete. Probably one of the best athletes I've ever seen, but all the flopping is unnecessary. That's the way he plays and it works too, they call it, so you can't be mad at him for it ... I looked at [the replay] and yeah, my arms did get extended but [Griffin] flailed everywhere like I threw him to half-court."

Here's the thing: Barnes is right. Blake Griffin has a horrible habit of exaggerating fouls. If he gets a small pop in the nose, he whips his head back like he just got drilled by Manny Pacquiao. If he gets pushed, he throws his arms out like he's belly-flopping. I mean, remember this? It made Andre Miller look like Brian Urlacher.

Thing is, Griffin has been told his whole life by his parents, coaches, friends and whoever else that everyone on the court is out to get him. He's been told that they're playing intentionally rough with him, that the refs aren't being fair because he's bigger and stronger. So it's just something he thinks. Hence the exaggerating. It's annoying, but it's just how it is.

The moral of the story is, the Lakers aren't really digging this whole Lob City thing. They've tried to be nice about it, but after all the woofing they likely heard over two preseason wins, they're sick of it. They're the team with the banners in Staples, not the Clips. 

And just so you know, the next meeting between the two teams is Jan. 14. Expect some fireworks.

Posted on: December 22, 2011 12:26 am
Edited on: December 22, 2011 12:46 am

Video: Matt Barnes flagrant foul on Blake Griffin

Posted by Ben Golliver

It's good to see that the lockout changed absolutely nothing about the NBA. Los Angeles Lakers forward Matt Barnes? Same person. Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin? Same person. Put the two together and it's a recipe for a royal rumble, even in a preseason game.

Barnes has carved a niche for himself as a hard-fouling, take-no-mess, massive-chip-on-the-shoulder psuedo-enforcer who isn't afraid to muddy up a game with his antics. Griffin is the NBA's poster boy for posterizing, a marketing jewel who flies above the rim with ease.

The two men came head-to-head during a Wednesday night preseaon game in Staples Center, when Barnes opted to shove Griffin to the ground, using both hands, for no apparent reason. He was immediately issued a flagrant foul one for his action and veteran official Bill Kennedy stepped in to ensure that Griffin would not retaliate.

A minor skirmish erupted as a bemused Griffin walked down to the other end of the court, and play resumed without any additional incident.

Here's the video of Matt Barnes' flagrant foul one on Blake Griffin.

Posted on: December 21, 2011 1:45 pm
Edited on: December 21, 2011 1:46 pm

Reggie Evans signs with Clippers

Posted by Royce Young

The Clippers needed more depth inside and they got it. And not just that, they got some gritty, tough depth.

Via Yahoo! Sports, forward Reggie Evans signed a one-year, veteran minimum deal with the Clippers. This is a quality pickup for the Clips as Blake Griffin needs a good, reliable backup and the team as a whole needs some frontcourt depth.

They probably need another center, as they don't even have one on the roster to back up DeAndre Jordan right now. But Evans is a tough, nasty rebounder and someone that gives the Clips a lot of help inside. They had Craig Smith last season but lost him to Portland in the offseason. While Evans is coming off a major foot injury, he's a player that can tear up the boards. Before the injury, he was leading the league in rebounding last season.

Before the injury in late November last season, Evans was grabbing 26.4 percent of all rebounds and 35.3 percent of all available defensive rebounds. Those are like all-time numbers. Granted, small sample size, but the dude can board.

So add him to a frontcourt of Jordan and Griffin and you've got a guy behind them that will help bang and shove against the likes of the Lakers and Thunder and someone that can give the Clips a boost inside. He rebounds, he plays rough and he adds an attitude. Great pickup by the Clips.
Posted on: December 21, 2011 1:39 am
Edited on: December 27, 2011 1:39 pm

NBA Power Rankings: Breakdown, Takedown

Posted by Royce Young and Ben Golliver


The 2011-2012 NBA season starts on Sunday, and with that comes the inaugural batch of CBSSports.com's NBA Power Rankings by Eye On Basketball's Matt Moore.

What did he get right? What did he get wrong? We're here to break it down and take it down.

1. Too High: Memphis Grizzlies at No. 7
Let's pump the brakes just a bit on the Grizzlies bandwagon right now. They look good and they made a lot of noise in the postseason, but how much of that was overachievement? How much of that was because of favorable matchups? The Grizzlies could be a really nice team, but a top eight power? I'm not ready to go there until they show they're actually something to be taken seriously. -- RY

2. Too Low: Portland Trail Blazers at No. 17 The Blazers had about as sucky an offseason as you could have. And we're talking about the Blazers here, a team that's had their fair share of sucky things. Greg Oden had his annual setback, Brandon Roy retired and the team still doesn't have a general manager. That said, Jamal Crawford is a perfect signing, LaMarcus Aldridge may be the West's best power forward and Nate McMillan seems to keep winning despite all the crap that falls down around him. -- RY

3. Most Overrated: Boston Celtics at No. 6 The roster is worse at virtually every position, injuries are mounting and Father Time is grasping to claim this group with both hands. The Celtics were dropkicked out of the playoffs by the Miami Heat, and the gap between the two teams has transformed into a canyon. The Big 4 can still get it done but they aren't scaring teams like they once did. It's possible to show the veterans too much respect, and that's what happened here. -- BG

4. Most Overlooked: Indiana Pacers at No. 12
The small-market Pacers have the best roster that no one is talking about. With talent at all five positions, a former All-Star added to the mix in David West plus expected growth from Paul George, Indiana could wind up being a top-5 team in the East. Their frontcourt has sneaky depth thanks to Jeff Foster, Jeff Pendergraph, Lou Amundson and Tyler Hansbrough, four guys who will do the dirty work and make life easier for West and franchise guy Danny Granger. More credit due! -- BG

5. Sure Thing: Toronto Raptors at No. 30 They stink. There's no way around it. I like DeMar DeRozan. I like Andrea Bargnani. I like Dwane Casey. I want to like the Raptors. But they aren't going to be good. -- RY

6. Wild Card: Los Angeles Clippers at No. 9 Take one look at the highlights from their preseason opening win over the Lakers and it's tempting to think the Clippers should be much higher than the No. 9 spot. Is No. 3 or No. 4 really out of the question for the league's latest and greatest flavor of the month? Of course, it's one thing to fill up highlight tapes and it's another to stack up wins. Where the Clippers settle in the West's hiearchy will be one of the biggest NBA questions to watch in January. -- BG
Posted on: December 20, 2011 10:17 am
Edited on: December 20, 2011 10:18 am

Lob City is open for business

By Matt Moore

The new and improved version of the Clippers took the floor Monday night for the first time in a preseason game against the Lakers. The results were impressive. The Clippers ran the Lakers' starters (who definitely looked like a team with new parts trying to integrate a new system) out of the building, and in doing so, showed off why they may break our Dunk-O-Meter this season.

The best dunk of the night wasn't actually a lob. It was just DeAndre Jordan going into Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum's house and taking their lunches, then eating it in front of them. 


Good gravy.

But if you want lobs? They've got lobs. CP3 wasn't even involved on this one. 


But hey, not like CP3 wasn't involved at all. 


It was preseason. It was one game. It means nothing. But you can already tell that if the Clippers stay healthy (which is a big if for this franchise), they're going to be one of the most exciting teams in the league. 

Welcome to Lob City. Please enjoy your stay.
Posted on: December 17, 2011 12:03 pm
Edited on: December 21, 2011 6:48 pm

2011 NBA Free Agency Winners and Losers

By Matt Moore

All the big names have landed, and while there are still a handful of guys working out where they'll be playing in 2011-2012, we have a pretty clear image of how free agency worked out this year. So to give you a recap on how teams managed to do, here are your winners and losers for NBA free agency.


New York Knicks: It takes a lot for them to get a winning status when they picked up Mike Bibby and re-signed Jared Jeffries. Tyson Chandler is a lot. Chandler gives them exactly what they need at center, for a reasonable price considering he's coming off winning the Finals as a difference maker starter and compliments Amar'e Stoudemire well. This could wind up as a disaster, but for pursuing defense over offense and size over speed, they get into the winner's circle.

Los Angeles Clippers: Two days ago I would have planted the Clippers in the losers circle with a dunce cap. $24 million for Caron Butler over three years? DeAndre Jordan for a ridiculous price? Are they stoned in Clipperland? Chauncey Billups who may or may not hate the ground you walk on for denying him free agency? But then they landed Chris Paul. And you go "Oooooooh" like you just figured out that they got off the island and it's a flash-forward not a flash-back. Shooters to go with Paul, veteran defenders to go with Paul, and the big man to provide long-term support for Griffin. The Clippers avoided disaster by getting CP3. But funny how that makes everything seem better.

Miami Heat: Eddy Curry already looks like a waste (has had conditioning issues already). Mario Chambers is a divisive point guard, but he's good enough to start for a team with no cap space. Landing Shane Battier, though, genius. Battier is going to miss threes like all Heat spot-up shooters do. But he's going to make their defensive rotations even better, their team chemistry even better, their basketball IQ even higher. He's worth the money and a win for them.

Indiana Pacers: We were all convinced the Pacers were going to splash onto the scene and overpay for a big man in such a way as to cripple the franchise. Instead, they got David West on a low eight-figures, 2-year deal that guarantees if his knees or production go, they have options and are not stuck. They re-signed Jeff Foster to give them another center, and they were prudent with not re-signing Josh McRoberts for more than he was worth. Good upgrade for them.

Phoenix Suns: Shannnon Brown is a great fit for the system, and they managed to convince Grant Hill to return. Brown in the run-and-gun system under Gentry should excel with Aaron Brooks stuck in China. Hill still played brilliantly last season and staying in Phoenix means he stays with that training staff which has extended his career after one filled with injury issues. The Suns didn't make any significant step forward, but in terms of just making good value signings, they did as well as most. 

Mid-level centers: Kwame Brown got one-year, $7 million. DeAndre Jordan made out like a bandit. Marc Gasol walked away with more money than Kendrick Perkins and Nene (though Gasol is arguably the best free agent in this class, just without the name value). It's a league short on legitimate star centers, and while the biggest free agent center names (Chandler, Nene, Greg Oden) did not land monstrous deals, the mid-level centers available rose up to meet in the middle of the band. Good year to get paid. 


Boston Celtics: They had David West stolen out from under them in the midst of the Chris Paul debacle. They re-signed Marquis Daniels which isn't bad but isn't great. They traded Glenn Davis in a sign-and-trade for Brandon Bass which is pretty good but doesn't address most of their concerns. They gave Jeff Green a big one-year deal after which it was discovered he will miss the entire season after surgery when a heart condition was revealed after a stress test. Their bench is unbearably thin with starters that can't log big minutes. No, it was not a good few weeks for the Celtics.

Orlando Magic: Giving Jason Richardson and Glen Davis mid-size contracts is not the way to keep Dwight Howard, I don't care how good a friend he is with them. The Magic sacrificed their future, which is going to become very important to them in the next six months, in order to try and make another run with the same team that didn't succeed last year, plus Davis who is a big who doesn't help their issues in rebounding and has conditioning issues. Re-signing Earl Clark doesn't make a big enough impact to matter.

Detroit Pistons: Re-signing Tayshaun Price at that price makes no sense whatsover, especially not for four years. They need to be looking to the future. I understand the desire to reward Prince for his time and send him off in Detroit white, but this team has questions it has to answer quickly, and Prince gets in the way of development for Austin Daye and Jonas Jerebko. Rodney Stuckey's re-signing gets in the way of Brandon Knight's development and continues his very mixed-results stay in the Motor City. 

Dallas Mavericks: Maybe 2012 will make up for it. But if we're just judging the Mavericks on what they gave up and what they got back, this wasn't a good offseason. Even outside of the trades which brought in a quality player and sent two out, Dallas lost its starting center and part-time starting two-guard in agency, without really bringing in anyone. They're deep enough to survive it but this was a team that would have been considered favorites had they brought back the gang. As it is, there are questions about the Mavericks this season and beyond.

New Orleans Hornets: Setting aside losing Chris Paul in trade and impending free agency, the Hornets re-signed Carl Landry for a high one-year deal and brought back Jason Smith for three years. The deals are cheap. It's not a bad set of deals. But it's still a little perplexing considering the overwhelming need for this team to tank in order to ensure a top five pick to go with  

Arron Afflalo: Afflalo hasn't signed yet, which isn't a problem but the fact that no team was willing to bother with making him an offer knowing the Nuggets would match means he may not sign for as much as he could have. Bear in mind DeAndre Jordan is a less established player than Afflalo and was helped by the Warriors' attempt to free him from Los Angeles. Afflalo could have likely wound up with top dollar as an unrestricted free agent. Denver may wind up as the best thing for his career, though.
Posted on: December 16, 2011 10:52 am
Edited on: December 16, 2011 11:09 am

Kobe on the Clips: 'About damn time'

Posted by Royce Young

On our podcast, Matt Moore and I started wondering about a playoff series between the Clippers and Lakers and just how amazing that would be. Because think about this: We're sitting here talking about the Clippers potentially taking on the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals or something. It's possible.

Just insane.

The Staples Center, and before that The Forum, has belonged to the Lakers for forever, with the Clippers having extremely mild success. We've never seen this type of competition between the two teams. No one has ever considered it anything close to a rivalry because in order for it to be that, it has to be competitive. Which it is not. Sixteen championships to zero, a rivalry does not make.

It's been Laker domination but things could change. The city is buzzing not about Kobe and the Lakers for once, but about the guys owned by Donald Sterling. And so when Kobe was asked about what he thinks about the rise of the Clips and if there will finally be a rivalry, he gave a simple answer.

"It's about damn time," he said.

About damn time, indeed.

Posted on: December 15, 2011 10:05 pm
Edited on: December 16, 2011 8:11 am

Kobe Bryant: NBA owners killed Chris Paul trade

Posted by Ben Golliverkobe-bryant-chris-paul

In a rare role reversal, the Lakers are playing bridesmaid to the Clippers this week in Los Angeles.

After decades of dominating in the headlines and the standings, the Lakers lost out on coveted All-Star point guard Chris Paul, who was finally traded by the New Orleans Hornets to the Clippers after multiple proposed deals with the Lakers were blocked by NBA commissioner David Stern.

Lakers All-Star guard Kobe Bryant, who is used to being the center of the Southern California sports universe, isn't happy about it.

ESPNLA.com reports that Bryant blames other owners from around the NBA for keeping Paul out of his clutches.
"I think other owners did not want the Lakers to make significant improvements again," Bryant said after practice Thursday, hours before Paul's introductory news conference with the Los Angeles Clippers, less than five miles across town.

"We always contended as players that the lockout was really more so about the owners fighting amongst themselves, which is what you just saw [with the vetoed trade]," Bryant said. "You got Chris Paul coming here and the other owners weren't with that, because you don't want another great player coming to L.A., and all of the sudden Los Angeles has another player that can carry them on well after I retire. So, it's more about the owners bickering amongst themselves."
Bryant's bitterness is totally understandable. The entire Paul trade process went down under the sketchiest of circumstances. Stern winds up being a major loser because of the means and Bryant's Lakers lose because of the ends. 
Life will move on, though, especially with the 2011-2012 season set to begin in just 10 days. The talk will quickly turn to which team is better: Lakers or Clippers? Assuming full health, the Lakers are still deeper and more talented but the Clippers are quickly going to be quick risers. Los Angeles is the Lakers' throne to lose, for now, but this role reversal could unfold even more dramatically over the next 6-9 months.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com