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Clippers trying to move up for Doncic
Hitnrun24 » 06/9/18 » 11:31am
06/19/18 » 8:47pm
2018 Draft Rumors
Dyce » 06/19/18 » 8:34pm
06/19/18 » 8:34pm
Milos Teidosic gone.
angelfan1958 » 06/18/18 » 11:17am
06/19/18 » 3:17pm
Kawhi wants to come to LA.
angelfan1958 » 06/15/18 » 11:07am (Page: 1, 2)
06/19/18 » 11:09am
Mike Woodson leaving Clippers
JGlanton » 05/15/18 » 9:54am
06/17/18 » 11:56pm
Let’s indulge in some dream scenarios.
With less than 48 hours until the start of the NBA draft, it’s time to entertain a fantasy that we’ve ignored for the last few weeks: trading up in the draft to select Luka Doncic. We’ve spent the pre-draft process profiling prospects who are likely to be in the Clippers’ minds with the 12th and 13th picks, as well as a handful who could be options if the Clippers move into the top 10 or move back into the mid-late teens. Largely, we’ve ignored a top tier of prospects who seem to have floors in the top 10 of the NBA draft: guys like DeAndre Ayton, Marvin Bagley, Trae Young, Jaren Jackson, and Mohamed Bamba. In that list, we’ve included Luka Doncic, the Solvenian prospect about whom so much has been written that I’m not sure what to add.
Doncic, at 19 years old, won Most Valuable Player of the Spanish ACB league en route to a championship, and won Most Valuable Player of the Euroleague en route to a Euroleague championship and Euroleague Final Four MVP. His per-36 averages (to account for only 25 minutes per game) were 20.9 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 6.6 assists. He’s the best player in Europe at 19, a 6’8” point guard winning individual and team trophies in a way that no player his age has ever done. There’s a lot to look at in terms of his strengths, weaknesses, and NBA projections, but sometimes scouting is really this simple: anyone performing at this caliber in top-level European competition is going to be a damn good NBA player.
So, how can we make Luka Doncic a Clipper?
It’s no secret that the Clippers’ new front office is in search of a star, a centerpiece player to build the New Clippers around after the departures of Chris Paul, J.J. Redick, and Blake Griffin in the last 12 months. They don’t have a bunch of assets, high-end prospects, or future picks to throw around to make godfather offers to teams, but they’re going to at least squeeze their way into the conversation this summer when it comes to angling for players like Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James, and, yes, Luka Doncic.
The big thing to note is that if Jerry West and Lawrence Frank want Luka to be a Clipper on Thursday night, they’ll need some help from other teams in the draft. It starts with the Phoenix Suns, who have the number 1 overall pick. All indications are that the Suns will take University of Arizona center DeAndre Ayton, who has become the consensus #1 pick in mock drafts since the lottery and hasn’t worked out for any teams other than the Suns. Of course, that’s not guaranteed until about 4:35 PM Pacific on Thursday, when Adam Silver calls Ayton up onto the stage as the number one pick. Phoenix recently hired Igor Kokoskov, who coaches Doncic on the Slovenian National Team, to be coach the Suns next season, and it’s impossible to know what discussions could be ongoing behind closed doors regarding the #1 pick.
But, if reports are to be believed, then Ayton is a safe lock to go to the Suns, and the draft really opens up with the Sacramento Kings’ second pick. That’s where things get much, much more uncertain. There’s a very real chance that the Kings take Doncic with the 2nd pick and are sold on him to the extent that they won’t really take any Clippers offer under consideration. There’s also a chance that the Kings take any number of other prospects, in which case Doncic would become available to the Atlanta Hawks at 3, and potentially to the Memphis Grizzlies at 4 and Dallas Mavericks at 5. Adrian Wojnarowski noted on an ESPN2 mock draft special Monday afternoon that while he thinks Doncic will go in the top 4, he considers Dallas at 5 to be Luka’s floor. While Woj would agree that any number of crazy thinks are possible, we’ll go with that guideline here: to have any chance at Luka, the Clippers will need to get into the top 5, but to have a real shot, they’ll need to get into the top 4.
With the #1 pick unattainable and the #5 pick likely not good enough, that leaves the Clippers with 3 options: the Kings, Hawks, and Grizzlies. What do they have to offer? Any package likely centers around picks 12 and 13 in this year’s draft, with possible inclusion of the Clippers’ 2021 first round pick. Beyond that, the team can add value to deals by taking on longer contracts in exchange for some L.A.’s expiring deals. In a last-ditch effort to get a deal done, the Clippers can also try to move Patrick Beverley for a mid-late first in this year’s draft, which could make for the last piece of value necessary to close a deal.
The most available of these picks appears to be Memphis’ at #4, where an effort to dump Chandler Parsons’ massive contract and desire to make one last push with Mike Conley and Marc Gasol could outweigh the need for top prospects that most lottery teams have. Unfortunately, acquiring the #4 pick absolutely requires relieving the Grizzlies of Parsons, who has played (and played poorly in) just 70 games in the last two years, and is owed $24 million next season and $25 million in 2019-20. Still, biting the bullet on two years of Parsons is probably worth it if Doncic is on the board at 4, especially since you’ll have that cap flexibility back just as Luka is 21 years and old and heading into his third season.
The harder portion of this deal is actually getting it done. With pending player options for Austin Rivers, Milos Teodosic, and Wesley Johnson, much of the Clippers’ potential expiring salary fodder isn’t available to be traded on draft night. Without those players, there’s no way for the Clippers to make salaries work with Parsons unless they include Tobias Harris—their current best player—or Danilo Gallinari, who has a similarly bad contract to Parsons.
Harris’ inclusion drastically changes the calculus of the trade from the Clippers perspective, likely letting the Clippers hold on to picks 12 and 13 and spark a total rebuild around three lottery picks, while Gallinari’s inclusion would require the Grizzlies to abandon hopes of freeing up cap space and be content with making Danilo their new #3 option for the next two years. The first option isn’t ideal for the Clippers, and the second isn’t ideal for the Grizzlies, but it’s possible that one could become a workable framework. Losing Harris stings, but it allows the Clippers to officially hit the reset button, build around prospects, and avoid a potentially huge new contract for Tobias in the summer of 2019. And while Gallinari is notoriously injury-prone, he’s capable of much, much greater contributions than Parsons, who will likely never be a starting-caliber player again.
Another alternative would be for some Clippers players to agree to opt in to the final year of their contracts. DeAndre Jordan likely isn’t a candidate here, but Austin Rivers could be a game-changer. If Austin opts into the final season of his contract, guaranteeing him a salary of $12,650,000 next season, that gives the Clippers a big expiring contract to build a Parsons contract around. In the short-term, Rivers is a shoe-in to start at shooting guard for the Grizzlies and he would pretty clearly be their third-best player behind Conley and Gasol, but after next season, he’d come off of the books, giving the Grizzlies money to play with in the summer of 2019. To make salaries match between Rivers and Parsons, the Clippers have several options that come without long-term burden for the Grizzlies. Boban Marjanovic has a $7 million expiring contract that, in combination with Rivers, would make a deal work. If Milos Teodosic similarly agrees to opt into his contract and be traded, adding him and Sam Dekker to a Rivers deal also makes the finances work, and the Grizzlies have the option of releasing Teodosic by July 15th to save $4.2 million of his $6.3 million salary next season. Finally, Wesley Johnson, who has reportedly already decided to opt in to the final season of his contract next season, would also give the Clippers enough of a boost to make salaries match alongside Rivers and Dekker.
Beyond the fiscal reality of salary-matching and the value of abandoning Parsons’ contract, the Clippers can add draft value to make a trade worthwhile for the Grizzlies. Just the Parsons-Gallinari upgrade, or saving a year of Parsons’ contract by exchanging it for expiring deals, isn’t worth giving up the chance to take Luka Doncic at pick 4. The Clippers adding some or all of picks 12, 13, and their 2021 first round pick helps to make up that difference. While the current front office has been more reluctant to part with future picks than the Doc Rivers regime, the team is open to including future draft assets to acquire a player of Doncic’s caliber.
It’s not surprising that pick 4 is the most available of the three we’re looking at. That, of course, comes with additional risk that Doncic won’t be there, rendering such an arrangement pointless (or at least significantly altering what the Clippers would be willing to give up in order to select Mohamed Bamba). Having a deal set up for the third pick instead of the fourth would allow the Clippers to significantly increase their odds of getting Doncic, but may prove more difficult. The Hawks, unlike the Grizzlies, don’t have established NBA All-Stars to try and build around short-term, meaning that it will be harder to convince them to pass on a top prospect for the long-term.
The Clippers, in hopes that the Hawks aren’t enamored with any of the top-tier prospects, can offer Atlanta a chance for two later picks at 12 and 13, and potentially a future first in 2021. That’s not much, and it’s probably an offer that other teams would be willing to beat if the pick is available. Beyond draft considerations, the Clippers can try to help relieve the Hawks of some bad contracts, but none are quite the obvious negatives that Parsons’ contract is.
Atlanta features three undesirable deals: Kent Bazemore, Dennis Schroder, and Miles Plumlee, Bazemore makes just over $18 million next season, with a player option for $19.3 million the year after, while Schroder has three years remaining at $15.5 million each, and Plumlee has two years left at $12.5 million each. While Bazemore and Schroder both have negative contracts, they still might be two players that the Hawks are reluctant to dump entirely for free, and Plumlee’s deal, while bad, isn’t the kind of cap-ruining contract that you trade the third overall pick to get out of.
The Clippers’ ability to match salaries in this case once again depends upon their player options. With some combination of their four decently-sized expiring contracts (Rivers, Marjanovic, Teodosic, and Johnson) and end-of-roster filler (Dekker, C.J. Williams, Sindarius Thornwell, and Jawun Evans), the Clippers could absorb any two of those three Hawks deals (I have a hunch that a little creativity could get all three bad contracts for all 8 smaller Clipper salaries, but it get sketchy and I haven’t quite figured it out, and it would have to be completed officially in July). It’s hard to know, at this point in the Hawks’ rebuild, if that’s a needle-mover for them or not.
The most sure bet for the Clippers to be able to select Doncic would be acquiring the #2 pick from the Sacramento Kings, but there’s no indication that the Kings have made the pick available. The Clippers, who have been making calls to gauge the market to move up, were reportedly rebuffed by the Kings when trying to build a deal around swapping the 2nd pick for 12/13.
Kings are not interested in trading No. 2 pick to Clippers for their No. 12, 13 picks, per source.— Brad Turner (@BA_Turner) June 19, 2018
While the Clippers can offer some additional value, the core of any package would be those two late lottery picks, so this is probably an indication that the Kings aren’t interested in moving the pick—or, if they do move it, they’ll look for deal centered around a higher pick in the 4-8 range. There is wild speculation regarding who the Kings like at #2, and it varies in a ton of different directions. Even if they don’t settle on Doncic, they may want to select Jaren Jackson or Marvin Bagley at #2, and if they choose to move back for Trae Young, Michael Porter, or Wendell Carter, they’ll still need to do better than the 12th pick.
Additionally, the Kings have no large, long-term contracts for the Clippers to swap expiring deals for, and they also already have a ton of prospects, meaning that one valuable pick is worth more to them than two or three less-valuable picks.
In short, a deal with the Kings seems about as unlikely as one with the Suns, and the situation with Atlanta is murky at best. While I wouldn’t rule out the Hawks, I’d say that if the Clippers want a shot at moving into the top 5 in the draft, they’ll have to set their sights on the Memphis Grizzlies and try to take advantage of the woeful Chandler Parsons contract. Will Doncic still be on the board at 4 for the Clippers to make such an effort? Even if he’s gone, will the Clippers try to talk to the Grizzlies in an effort to land Mo Bamba? We’ll find out on Thursday.
The Clippers have tried to plot a course that could potentially push them toward a better position in Thursday’s NBA draft.
They have offered their own lottery picks, the 12th and 13th selections, to make a deal to move up, according to NBA executives who were not authorized to speak publicly on...
Duke’s lesser-known big men is one of the best prospects in a stacked draft class. And he could fall to the Clippers.
Name: Wendell Carter Jr.
Age: 19.2 years old
Dimensions: 6’10” tall, 7’4.5” wingspan, 251.4 pounds
Stats: 13.5 points, 9.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 2.1 blocks, and 2.0 turnovers in 26.5 minutes per game. Shot 56.1% from the field, 41.3% from three (1.2 attempts per game), and 73.8% from the free throw line (4.5 attempts).Strengths:
Where to begin… Wendell Carter is perhaps the most well-rounded prospect in the entire draft, providing at least average capabilities at almost every skill of importance for a modern big man. He’s a large guy with decent athleticism, making him a strong rebounder on both ends of the court. That same size also enables him to muscle for position in the low post on offense, and he can go up strong around the basket with both hands. His footwork in the post is extremely advanced for his age, and he’s capable of spin moves, duck-ins, and a variety of hook shots.
When placed on the perimeter on offense, Carter is just as useful. He’s the best playmaking center in this draft class, working extremely well with Marvin Bagley III in two-big sets at Duke. That passing (as well as his solid screening ability) also serves him well in dribble handoffs, a staple of current NBA offenses. While he’s not a gunner from outside, he’s a serviceable shooter from the perimeter, someone who the defense at least must make a show of guarding. As he works on his shot in the NBA, he could develop into a true floor-spacer from the center position, which is incredibly valuable. His solid free throw percentages and the smoothness of his shot from midrange bode well for his development in that area. And when defenders run him off the three-point line, Carter’s handles are good enough for him to attack the closeout and get all the way to the rim. As he matures and works on his dribbling and court awareness when on the move, he could even add a pull-up midrange jumper to his repertoire. Better, his passing ability once again makes an appearance, as he can easily find the open man as defenses scramble to respond to his drives.
On defense, Wendell uses his large frame and wingspan to protect the rim with force. He’s doesn’t have incredible bounce, but he has enough to get up and reject opposing big men, though truly explosive leapers could finish over him. Moreover, he’s a smart defensive player who rotates well, and works hard to get back into position once he’s helped. His lateral quickness isn’t fantastic, but he’s already acknowledged that as something he needs to work on to take his game to the next level, and he has the smarts to funnel perimeter players into help or cut off their angles, even if he can’t fully slide with them.
For intangibles, there doesn’t seem to be much to say that hasn’t already been said about Wendell Carter. By all accounts he’s a fantastic teammate, a kind person, and someone who puts in the time to improve himself on and off the court. He’s supremely intelligent, and that shows in how he plays basketball. If Carter fully develops into his ceiling, he’s a superb number two option on the offensive end and a well above-average defensive presence at center. That’s an easy All-Star level player, possibly All-NBA.Weaknesses:
The criticisms of Wendell seem more like nitpicks than actual weaknesses. He’s slightly undersized as a big man at 6’10”, and there will be times when his finishing on offense and rim protection on defense are compromised somewhat as a result. Similarly, he’s not an explosive athlete like some of his counterparts in this draft-- he won’t be quite as gifted a highlight-maker or shot-creator as his peers might be. Sometimes he’s a bit hesitant on offense, overthinking things rather than just playing ball. This can lead to turnovers or sticky offensive possessions, though hopefully the right coaching staff and environment would be able to cure this relatively easily.
Carter’s shot is still somewhat of a work in progress. He mostly had lots of time and space to shoot jumpers at the college level, struggling when forced to shoot more quickly when players closed out hard. He will need to work on a faster shot release, and one that is less bothered by pressure. He’s also not going to be a super dynamic defensive player out on the perimeter, as he doesn’t quite possess the footspeed to stick with smaller players for very long. But I think this weakness is overblown: he’s not slow of foot, and he’s smart enough to make up some of the difference anyway.
The lack of size and athleticism means Wendell probably doesn’t have the tools to be a true superstar in the NBA. He doesn’t project as a player who can consistently create shots for himself or others, instead working as a highly effective fulcrum in a dynamic offense. So, for teams who desperately want to draft their future number one option on offense, Wendell probably won’t be their guy.Fit on Clippers:
If DeAndre Jordan uses his player option, Wendell’s fit is a bit tricky, as he would be relegated to the backup center role behind DJ. If DJ moves on, however, Wendell would fit snugly into the Clippers’ starting center position, and would be guaranteed 30 minutes a game barring something unexpected.
In terms of scheme, Wendell is an ideal fit as a center in Doc Rivers’ offense. His passing ability is ideal, as Doc’s centers are frequently used in dribble handoffs and as playmakers from the top of the key. Wendell would need to be more confident and decisive in his actions, but he has the tools to really help ignite the Clippers’ offense in the halfcourt. Doc has shown inclinations to go small and space the floor in recent years, and Wendell would finally give him a starting-level center who can stretch the floor with outside shooting. This could also make Carter an interesting fit with Montrezl Harrell, as it would allow Trez to post up on the block without another big man clogging the lane. While he doesn’t possess the incredible rim-running talent of Jordan, he’s still a more than capable athlete who can finish strong around the basket; he would be a solid pick and roll partner for any of the Clippers’ ball-handlers.
On defense, Carter could fit into DJ’s role easily as a rim-protector who prefers to hang back near the basket rather than hedge or switch onto the perimeter. Although Wendell isn’t quite DJ as a rebounding presence, he should still be a near-lock for double-digit rebounds if given substantial minutes, and should help make up for the Clippers’ usual lack of size elsewhere on the perimeter. Basically, he’s a feasible short-term DJ replacement who is also capable of much more, especially on offense.Bottom Line:
Wendell Carter is being overlooked in this draft in favor of big men who are more athletic (Marvin Bagley III, DeAndre Ayton) or boast more ridiculous dimensions (Mo Bamba, Jaren Jackson Jr.). He shouldn’t be. While he doesn’t have the superstar upside of some of those other players, Carter is a high-floor prospect who still possesses a ceiling as a perennial All-Star. Even in this stacked draft class there’s no way he should be available to the Clippers at 12. But between some teams hungering for higher upside players, and others that don’t want big men, there’s a chance that Carter falls to the Clippers. If he does, he would immediately become the best prospect on the team since Blake Griffin, and a worthy player to build the franchise around going forward. He’s that good.
The 2018 NBA Draft is this Thursday and here are our final predictions for who the Los Angeles Clippers will select with the 12th and 13th overall picks. The future and direction of the Los Angeles Clippers widely depend on what the team decides to do with the 12th and 13th overall picks in the […]
Los Angeles Clippers: Final predictions of the 12th and 13th overall picks - LA Sports Hub - LA Sports Hub - A Los Angeles Sports Site - Lakers, Clippers, Rams, Chargers, Kings, Dodgers, Angels, USC Trojans, UCLA Bruins, Ducks, Galaxy
Here’s a look at which prospects are being projected to the Clippers by some of the draft’s most connected sources
The 2018 NBA Draft is just three days away, and things are starting to get increasingly tense. Rumors and trade talks are swirling, and nobody is quite sure what is a smokescreen and what isn’t. Nevertheless, here are the players being mocked to the Clippers by some of the industry’s finest.
12: Lonnie Walker IV
13: Robert Williams
No explanation was given, but this would be an iffy draft for me. I like Williams, but drafting for need (DeAndre Jordan replacement) isn’t what the Clippers should be doing. He has a nice floor, but a questionable level of upside. Walker is also a guy who could be really good, but isn’t the surest bet, and just doesn’t seem to be one of the best prospects still on the board.
12: Robert Williams
Robert Williams is here being labeled largely as a DeAndre Jordan replacement, a center who can run the floor, throw down lobs, and protect the rim on defense. Gilgeous-Alexander is described as a nice scoring and defensive guard who would fit well with the Clippers, but without much given as to his potential place within the franchise. I like Shai as a pick a lot, but again, drafting Williams on a “need” basis just does not seem to be what the Clippers are about.
12: Miles Bridges
13: Troy Brown
I would love this draft for the Clippers. Bridges is, as the Ringer guys said, a player with a relatively high floor and an immense ceiling. If he’s available at 12 and the Clippers don’t pick him, I think it will come back to haunt them. Troy Brown is a bit of a reach, but he’s smart, he plays defense, he can pass, and he just does a lot of things right on the basketball court. Also, Miles’ fantastic shooting could make up for Brown’s deficiency in that area.
This is another interesting set of mock drafts, as this time, only one player is picked by more than one outlet as going to the Clippers: Robert Williams. We have profiles on all these guys already up on Clips Nation, and I linked to each of them above. The Ringer’s draft is by far my favorite, though I don’t truly dislike any of the picks that were made.
Still, the only thing that remains clear about the Clippers in this draft is that nobody really knows who they might select.
It’s not a sure thing, but it makes sense with how the off-season is looking.
Teodosic played a full professional European career before coming to the NBA at age 30 last summer, and had a lingering plantar fascia injury significantly hamper an otherwise successful rookie campaign. Teodosic has a team option for $6.3 million next season, and if he opts in, the Clippers have until July 15th to waive him and only owe him $2.1 million before the full value of his contract becomes guaranteed.
Sportando reports that, according to a source, the Clippers will opt to waive Teodosic if he opts in. The source cites concerns surrounding Teodosic’s health and age, with the Clippers having doubts about Milos’ ability to recover from the plantar fascia injury that cost him 37 games last season and preferring to add a younger player to their guard rotation instead.
It’s worth noting that this report should be taken with a grain of salt. There are only a select few names in NBA journalism whose anonymously sourced reports can be considered fact, and I’m not familiar with Orazio Cauchi’s writing or connections. Furthermore, Sportando as an outlet has a spotty reputation with reporting and breaking news, oftentimes being hit-or-miss. Still, there is some credibility in Sportando, especially when dealing with European news (which suggests this leak didn’t come from the Clippers’ organization, but someone on the Milos side of things).
Ultimately, I’ll consider this report to be a rumor, an unconfirmed rumbling about a direction that the team is considering. Ultimately, this path makes sense for the Clippers, even though Milos’ shooting and infectious passing made him somewhat of a fan favorite in his rookie season. Teodosic is 31 years old and suffering from a chronic foot injury. He doesn’t defend well and likely has little to no trade value. And he’s on a roster with far too many guards, competing not only for minutes but for roster space with veterans who have more trade value (Patrick Beverley, Avery Bradley), and younger players in their prime (Austin Rivers), and prospects (Jawun Evans, Sindarius Thornwell, Tyrone Wallace, and any rookie that the Clippers may pick in this week’s NBA Draft).
With just 15 roster spots, the Clippers can hardly afford to carry 8 guards into the season, and with the team’s current trajectory (not contending for a championship in the next couple of seasons), the team should at least consider waiving Milos ahead of the July 15th guarantee date to save some money and free up that roster spot.
The Los Angeles Clippers are at a crossroads between contention and rebuilding and the choice, at least from the outside looking in, seems clear. With the recent news of Kawhi Leonard wanting out of San Antonio, Los Angeles Clippers fans may be getting exciting. Los Angeles is Leonard’s preferred destination of choice, making the Clippers […]
Los Angeles Clippers: Time to go towards rebuilding, not contending - LA Sports Hub - LA Sports Hub - A Los Angeles Sports Site - Lakers, Clippers, Rams, Chargers, Kings, Dodgers, Angels, USC Trojans, UCLA Bruins, Ducks, Galaxy
The Clippers don’t know what the future holds with starting center DeAndre Jordan and backup big man Montrezl Harrell.
Because of that uncertainty, it was important for the Clippers to take a close look at Texas A&M center Robert Williams in a private pre-draft workout Friday at the team’s practice...
Michigan State forward Miles Bridges is an interesting prospect for the Los Angeles Clippers to consider in the 2018 NBA Draft. The 2018 NBA Draft is the most important draft for the Los Angeles Clippers since selecting Blake Griffin with the first overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft — kickstarting the Lob City era. […]
Los Angeles Clippers 2018 NBA Draft profile: Miles Bridges - LA Sports Hub - LA Sports Hub - A Los Angeles Sports Site - Lakers, Clippers, Rams, Chargers, Kings, Dodgers, Angels, USC Trojans, UCLA Bruins, Ducks, Galaxy