Archive for the ‘ Los Angeles Clippers Blog ’ Category

Blake Griffin will not play for 2016 Team USA

Clippers forward Blake Griffin won’t participate in this summer’s USA Basketball Team training camps and exhibition tour. That’s the team that will play in the summer Olympics.

Griffin underwent a bone marrow procedure on his left quad tendon on April 27 and has already begun the rehabilitation process with the expectation that he will be ready for the start of the 2016-17 NBA season.

The five-time NBA All-Star originally injured the quad on December 25, 2015 against the Lakers.

In 35 regular season games this season, Griffin averaged 21.4 points, 8.4 rebounds and 4.9 assists in 33.4 minutes. In four playoff games, he averaged 15.0 points, 8.8 rebounds and 4.0 assists.

Los Angeles Clippers guard Jamal Crawford is the winner of the 2015-16 NBA Sixth Man Award for his contributions in a reserve role, the NBA announced today. He becomes the first player to earn the honor three times. The 36-year-old Crawford also breaks his own record, set two years ago, as the oldest winner.

Crawford amassed 51 first-place votes and 341 total points from a panel of 130 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. The Golden State Warriors’ Andre Iguodala finished second with 288 points (33 first-place votes), and the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Enes Kanter was third with 182 points (19 first-place votes).

Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote. To be eligible for the award, players had to have come off the bench in more games than they started.

Crawford came off the bench in 74 of his 79 appearances and averaged 14.2 points and 2.3 assists in 26.9 minutes in all games, helping the Clippers (53-29) post their fourth straight 50-win season. He recorded 33 games with 15 or more points off the bench, third most in the NBA behind the Denver Nuggets’ Will Barton (38) and the New Orleans Pelicans’ Ryan Anderson (36). As a starter, Crawford scored at least 30 points in four of five games. Crawford also ranked second in the NBA in free throw percentage (90.4).

A 16-year veteran, Crawford previously won the Kia NBA Sixth Man Award in 2009-2010 with the Atlanta Hawks and in 2013-14 with the Clippers. When Crawford was honored for the first time as a Clipper, he joined Kevin McHale, Ricky Pierce and Detlef Schrempf as the only two-time winners. Crawford is the only player to win the award with multiple teams.

The Indiana Pacers’ Frank Vogel and the Los Angeles Clippers’ Doc Rivers today were named the NBA Eastern and Western Conference Coaches of the Month, respectively, for games played in April.

Vogel led the Pacers to the best record in the Eastern Conference at 6-1. The Pacers won their final three games and held off the Detroit Pistons for the seventh seed in the East playoffs. Indiana averaged 108 points per game and shot a conference-best 49.3 percent from the field in April. Four of the Pacers’ six wins came by double digits, and their +8.6 scoring differential led the conference.

Rivers guided the Clippers, the fourth seed in the Western Conference playoffs, to a 6-1 record, tops in the West. The Clippers surrendered 100 or more points just twice in seven games and held opponents to an average of 94.1 points on a league-low 40.6 percent shooting from the field. L.A. posted back-to-back home wins over two West playoff teams, the Dallas Mavericks and Memphis Grizzlies, on April 10 and 12, rounding out a 4-0 month at Staples Center.

Other nominees for Coach of the Month were Boston’s Brad Stevens, Charlotte’s Steve Clifford, Dallas’ Rick Carlisle, Golden State’s Steve Kerr, Miami’s Erik Spoelstra, Portland’s Terry Stotts and Toronto’s Dwane Casey.

Ryan Gomes named D-League Impact Player of the Year

Los Angeles D-Fenders forward Ryan Gomes was today named the 2015-16 NBA Development League Impact Player of the Year, as voted on by the league’s 19 head coaches. The award recognizes a player who joined an NBA D-League team after Nov. 26, 2015, and made the greatest contribution to his team’s success following that in-season acquisition.

Gomes (6-7, 245, Providence) joined the D-Fenders, the NBA D-League affiliate of the Los Angeles Lakers, on Jan. 7, 2016, and played his first game on Jan. 9, 19 games into the 2015-16 season. He appeared in the team’s next 31 games (28 starts), averaging 18.2 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 32.0 minutes. He scored in double figures 28 times, including two 30-plus point outings, and recorded nine double-doubles.

Gomes helped the D-Fenders to a 27-23 regular-season record and the fourth overall seed in the NBA D-League Western Conference Playoffs. The team defeated the Reno Bighorns 2-1 in the Conference Semifinals and will face the Austin Spurs in the best-of-three Conference Finals.

An eight-year NBA veteran, Gomes was selected by the Boston Celtics in the second round (50th overall pick) of the 2005 NBA Draft. Gomes owns NBA career averages of 10.1 points, 4.6 rebounds and 27.6 minutes in 487 games with the Celtics, Minnesota Timberwolves, Los Angeles Clippers and Oklahoma City Thunder.

Here’s the Los Angeles Daily News reporting on the Clippers and power forward Blake Griffin. It’ll definitely be worth keeping track of how Griffin fits back in with the squad as he makes his long-awaited return:

Blake Griffin set to return for Clippers

Blake Griffin will not have played for three months and a week when he takes the floor with his Clippers for a game against the Washington Wizards on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. at Staples Center.

He had a partially torn left quad tendon. He still does, actually. He had a fractured right hand because he punched team assistant equipment manager Matias Testi on Jan. 23. For that, he served a four-game suspension, and also lost a fifth game’s pay for his punch-related injury.

Griffin, who has apologized for his actions, was asked Saturday what he’s learned about himself through this ordeal.

“Yeah, I learned a lot,” he said before practice. “But those things are for me. You learn a lot about a lot of people and you kind of figure out a lot of things. But those are things, like I said, for me.”

DeAndre Jordan is above 70% FG this season

In addition to his rebounding prowess, Clippers center DeAndre Jordan also leads the NBA in field goal percentage (70.2). The 6-11 center, who also led the league in field goal percentage last season (71.0), is seeking to become the first player in NBA history to hit the 70 percent mark twice in a career. Wilt Chamberlain shot an NBA record 72.7 percent in 1972-73. Jordan isn’t the only Clipper scorching the nets. Jamal Crawford leads the league in free throw percentage (91.4), while J.J. Redick is pacing all players in three-point percentage (47.1). No team has ever had all three leaders at the end of a season since the three-point line was introduced for the 1979-80 season.

– NBA News

Blake Griffin begins serving suspension

Blake Griffin begins serving suspension

The L.A. Clippers announced today that forward Blake Griffin has been medically cleared for all basketball activities and will begin serving his four-game, team-imposed suspension on Sunday, March 27 when the Clippers play the Denver Nuggets.

Griffin has missed the last 41 games with a partially torn left quad tendon and right hand fracture, and will return to action on Sunday, April 3 against the Washington Wizards.

In his 30 games this season, Griffin is averaging 23.2 points, 8.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists in 34.9 minutes

The Los Angeles Clippers have signed forward/center Alex Stepheson to a second 10-day contract.

Stepheson, 28, has appeared in two games with the Clippers scoring two points, grabbing two rebounds and recording one block in nine minutes.

The 6-foot-10 inch forward/center appeared in 31 games (all starts) for the Iowa Energy in the NBA Developmental League this season and was a 2016 D-League All-Star, averaging 15.9 points, a league-high 13.8 rebounds and 1.3 blocks

The Los Angeles native and former Harvard-Westlake star has played professionally in Greece, Slovenia and Turkey since finishing his collegiate career at the University of Southern California.

Stepheson averaged 12.3 points and a league-leading 9.2 rebounds in 26.8 minutes over 29 games (21 starts) during the 2014-15 season for Istanbul Buyuksehir Belediyesi.

Undrafted in the 2011 NBA Draft, Stepheson also made three appearances for the Dallas Mavericks during the 2015 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas.

Here’s the OC Register reporting on the 37-20 Clippers, who have more than survived their time without injured power forward Blake Griffin:

In the first 15 games of the season, the Clippers’ defensive rating was 104.0, 23rd in the NBA. In the 42 games since, that number drops all the way to 99.0, the second-best total in the league, trailing only the San Antonio Spurs (96.5).

As of Thursday, the Clippers had the sixth-best defense in the NBA (100.3).

One reason stands out for the drastic improvement: The Clippers simply got more comfortable with the changes they made.

The biggest switch had to do with DeAndre Jordan, who was moved from the perimeter closer to the paint on pick-and-roll coverage. The change was designed to keep the Clippers from scrambling to cover for one another and to keep opponents from getting open 3-point attempts.

Vander Blue named D-League Performer of Week

Vander Blue of the Los Angeles D-Fenders was today named NBA Development League Performer of the Week for games played Monday, Feb. 15 through Sunday, Feb. 21. The honor is the first of Blue’s career.

Blue (6-4, 200, Marquette) helped Los Angeles to a 3-0 week, averaging 29.7 points (second in the league) on 46.7 percent shooting (28-for-60) to go with 7.0 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.0 steals. He connected on 28-of-31free throw attempts, good for 90.3 percent.

Other top performers considered include Austin’s Keifer Sykes, Erie’s Tyler Harvey, Idaho’s J.J. O’Brien, Iowa’s Andrew Harrison, Maine’s Coty Clarke and Malcolm Miller, Reno’s Ricky Ledo, Rio Grande Valley’s Will Cummings, Texas’ Brandon Ashley and Westchester’s Gani Lawal.

The L.A. Clippers announced today the team has signed forward/center Alex Stepheson to a 10-day contract.

Stepheson, 28, appeared in 31 games (all starts) for the Iowa Energy in the NBA Developmental League this season and was a 2016 D-League All-Star, averaging 15.9 points, a league-high 13.8 rebounds and 1.3 blocks

The Los Angeles native and former Harvard-Westlake star has played professionally in Greece, Slovenia and Turkey since finishing his collegiate career at the University of Southern California.

The 6-foot-10 inch forward/center averaged 12.3 points and a league-leading 9.2 rebounds in 26.8 minutes over 29 games (21 starts) during the 2014-15 season for Istanbul Buyuksehir Belediyesi.

Undrafted in the 2011 NBA Draft, Stepheson also made three appearances for the Dallas Mavericks during the 2015 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas.

jeff green

The L.A. Clippers announced today the team has acquired forward Jeff Green from the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for Lance Stephenson and a future protected first-round pick.

Green, 29, is averaging 12.2 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 53 games (31 starts) for Memphis this season. The seven-year NBA veteran has career averages of 14.1 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 609 regular season appearances (463 starts) with the Grizzlies, Boston Celtics and Seattle/Oklahoma City Thunder.

“Lance was a true professional and we appreciate all that he did for us,” Clippers President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Doc Rivers said. “In the short time he was here, he had a good impact on our team. We are excited to add Jeff to the Clippers and I am looking forward to coaching him again.”

A Maryland native, the 6-foot-9 inch Green played under Rivers in Boston from 2011-2013 and was a member of the 2007-08 NBA All-Rookie First Team.

Originally selected by Boston with the 5th pick in the 2007 NBA Draft out of Georgetown University, Green was traded to Seattle on Draft Night. The 2007 Big East Player of the Year, Green led the Hoyas to the Final Four before declaring for the draft following his junior season.

Stephenson, 25, averaged 4.7 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 43 games (10 starts) for the Clippers this season. He holds career averages of 8.3 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists over 314 games (186 starts) for the Clippers, Charlotte Hornets and Indiana Pacers.

lance stephenson

The Clippers beat the trade deadline buzzer Thursday by sending Lance Stephenson and a lottery-protected first-round draft pick to the Memphis Grizzlies for Jeff Green in a move that bolsters their frontcourt.

Green can play both forward positions and could presumably fill in at power forward until Blake Griffin returns from a broken right hand and a four-game suspension that is expected to sideline him until next month.

Then Green, 29, could switch to small forward, one of the Clippers’ biggest needs in recent seasons as it started Matt Barnes and Luc Mbah a Moute.

The 6-foot-9, 235-pound Green, who is in the final season of a contract that pays him $9.4 million, was averaging 12.2 points and 4.5 rebounds for the Grizzlies. Green spent two seasons playing for Clippers Coach Doc Rivers in Boston while also sitting out the 2011-12 season because of a heart condition.

– Los Angeles Times

The following is a joint statement from L.A. Clippers owner Steve Ballmer and President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Doc Rivers:

Clippers suspend and fine Blake Griffin

The L.A. Clippers announced today that forward Blake Griffin has been suspended without pay for four games for striking a team employee on Jan. 23 and his wages will be withheld for one additional game for injuries he sustained. The NBA has assisted us in this process.

The Clippers will donate the salary from the five games to charities focused on disadvantaged youth in Los Angeles. At his request, Blake will support this activity with his time.

We have made it clear that this conduct has no place in the Clippers organization. Blake is remorseful and has apologized for his actions. He is a valued member of our Clippers family and we support him as he rejoins the team. He understands his actions have consequences, and is eager to get back to work with his teammates, the organization and Clipper Nation which starts immediately with rehab, appearances and attendance at games.

For our team and organization, it is time to move forward which begins today and ultimately concludes when we have Blake back on the court.

Austin Rivers suffers hand fracture

Austin Rivers suffers hand fracture

The L.A. Clippers announced today that guard Austin Rivers suffered a left hand fracture in the second quarter of the Clippers loss to Minnesota on Feb. 3. Rivers did not play in the Clippers game Feb. 5 in Orlando and underwent an MRI Feb. 6 in Miami that revealed the fracture.

Rivers will be re-evaluated in Los Angeles on Monday and a timetable for his return will be established at that time.

This season, Rivers has appeared in 46 games (5 starts) and is averaging a career-high 8.1 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 21.6 minutes per game.

Report: Austin Rivers has broken hand

Report: Austin Rivers has broken hand

The Clippers are 33-17 this season and have played very well despite star power forward Blake Griffin missing serious time due to injury. But they have reportedly suffered another injury, this time to their backcourt.

According to several ESPN reporters (Chris Broussard and Brian Windhorst), backup guard Austin Rivers has a broken hand and will miss 4-6 weeks of action.

Austin is the Clippers’ sixth leading scorer this season. Coming off the bench for 41 of the 46 games he’s played, Rivers is averaging 8.1 points in 21.6 minutes per outing.

FEB. 7 UPDATE FROM THE CLIPPERS: Austin Rivers suffers hand fracture

The L.A. Clippers announced today the team has signed forward Jeff Ayres to a second 10-day contract.

A five-year NBA veteran, Ayres, 28, has appeared in three games with the Clippers scoring two points and grabbing two rebounds.

In 223 career regular season games with Portland, Indiana, San Antonio and Los Angeles, he is averaging 3.0 points and 2.7 rebounds in 10.0 minutes. Ayres was a member of the 2014 NBA Champion Spurs and has played in 36 career Playoff games.

The Ontario, CA native most recently played for the Idaho Stampede in the NBA Developmental League, averaging 16.3 points and 9.5 rebounds in 23 games this season and was named a 2015 D-League All-Star.

A stand-out at Etiwanda High School in Rancho Cucamonga, CA, where he played with former Clippers guard Darren Collison, Ayres was originally drafted with the 31st pick in the 2009 NBA Draft by the Sacramento Kings and traded to Portland on Draft Night.

The 6-foot-10 inch forward played four seasons at Arizona State (2005-2009) earning All-Pac 10 First Team honors in 2009 when he averaged 14.5 points and 8.2 rebounds.

deandre jordan

Clippers center DeAndre Jordan shot 70.7 percent from the field, down from 74.7 percent in December, as he takes aim at Wilt Chamberlain’s record 72.7 percent in 1972-73. Jordan, who leads the NBA in field goal percentage (71.5) for the fourth straight season, picked a good time to have his best overall month of the season, with forward Blake Griffin sidelined and rivals such as red-hot Memphis looking to overtake the Clippers in the standings. He averaged 13.8 points and 15.1 rebounds in January as the Clippers went 11-3 to improve to 32-16, good for fourth place in the West. Jordan is within striking distance of leading the NBA in both field goal percentage and rebounding for the third season in a row: He is the only qualified player shooting better than 62 percent, and he ranks second in rebounding (13.8 rpg) behind Detroit’s Andre Drummond (15.0 rpg).

– NBA News

The following is a joint statement from L.A. Clippers owner Steve Ballmer and President of Basketball Operations and Head Coach Doc Rivers:

Clippers issue statement on Blake Griffin

L.A. Clippers forward Blake Griffin suffered a spiral fracture of the fourth metacarpal in his right hand throwing a punch on Jan. 23 in Toronto.

This conduct has no place in our organization and this incident does not represent who we are as a team. We are conducting a full investigation with assistance from the NBA. At the conclusion of the investigation, appropriate action will be taken.

Griffin received X-rays on Jan. 25th in Los Angeles that revealed the injury and he underwent a procedure on his hand Tuesday morning. The procedure was performed by Dr. Steve Shin. Recovery time from the injury is approximately four to six weeks.

Clippers trade Josh Smith to Rockets

The L.A. Clippers announced today the team has acquired the draft rights to Maarty Leunen from the Houston Rockets in exchange for forward Josh Smith, the draft rights to Sergei Lishouck and cash considerations.

Leunen, 30, was a stand-out at the University of Oregon and the 54th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by Houston. Leunen currently plays for Scandone Avellino of the Italian Serie A.

The Clippers signed Smith on July 16, 2015 as a free agent and the 11-year NBA veteran appeared in 32 games (1 start) for Los Angeles this season, averaging 5.7 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 14.3 minutes per game.

Originally selected by the Atlanta Hawks with the 17th pick in the 2004 NBA Draft, Smith has appeared in 868 career regular season games with Atlanta, Detroit, Houston and the Clippers and owns career averages of 14.8 points, 7.6 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 2.0 blocks in 32.9 minutes.

The rights to Lishouck, 32, were acquired by the Clippers on Jan. 7, 2015 from the Philadelphia 76ers. Originally drafted by the Memphis Grizzlies with the 49th overall selection of the 2004 NBA Draft, Lishouck currently plays for UCAM Murcia in Spain.

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