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.