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Old 09-29-2009, 09:52 PM   #1
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Default Training Camp Discussion:

Quote:
When they opened up practice, they were running a three-team, five-on-five, winner's outs sort of thing. If your team scored, you took the ball back the other way at the third team - if you got scored on, you waited on the defensive end until a team came back at you. So you had to get a stop to get the ball, and as long as you kept scoring, you kept playing. Fun.

With Blake Griffin resting his 'sore patellar tendon'
the first unit consisted of Baron, EJ, Thornton, Camby and Kaman;
the second unit was Telfair, Butler, Ricky Davis, Smith and DJ;
the third unit was everyone else - Collins, Anthony Roberson, Jerel McNeal, Kareem Rush, Novak, Taj Gray and Skinner.



Perhaps because they had a couple of subs and were a little fresher, the third string actually won the portion we watched, and had the pleasure of watching a bunch of guys with 8 figure guaranteed contracts run lines. Sweet.

At the conclusion of practice, CMDsr held forth for awhile. Dena from the Clippers was there with her brand spanking new HD Flip video camera, so his session will no doubt be up on the Clippers You Tube channel by the time I post this. Coach seemed genuinely pleased - he felt like it was very good first practice, and was particularly positive about how the new guys like Telfair, Butler and Smith were picking up their roles.

Among other statements from the coach:
Conditioning is much better this season than last and almost everyone hit their targets for day one, or came very close;
Kaman and Gordon are in the best shape of anyone;
Coach relayed a comment from John Lucas, who was impressed by Kaman - as is often the case, he just didn't realize how skilled the guy is.

We got a chance to talk to Blake a little also (again, I assume the video will be up on YouTube soon). He's not worried about the knee - they had a precautionary MRI which revealed no structural damage. Asked if he was frustrated at the continued wait to get started, he said that the vets impressed on him how long the season is, and how long his career is going to be - he'll be out there soon enough. BG and MDsr have slightly different plans for the rookie for the rest of the week. Blake wants to get out there tomorrow. Coach is talking about having him rest for four or five days. I don't see that happening.

Other random observations:
Lucas went into 'NBA training guru' mode after the practice proper had ended, running all of the threes (Collins, Thornton, Novak, Smith, Butler) through a series of drills. Shoot from this cone, dribble to this cone, pull up shoot, reverse pivot, post up, that sort of thing. As we've said before, he looks like a great addition to the staff.
I mentioned in a comment that new assistant coach Tony Brown was not at Media Day yesterday. He's been out of town, and gets back some time today.
Former Clipper Sean Rooks was acting as an unofficial assistant coach today.
CMDsr told a couple great stories after practice about his personal history with advanced basketball statistics. Look for a thorough post from Kevin (it was his question, and I know he's planning a post about it, so I don't want to steal his thunder) on ClipperBlog.

The team has another practice late this afternoon.

ClipsNation.com

Glad to see Kaman is in good shape.
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Old 09-30-2009, 12:04 PM   #2
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Default Re: Training Camp: Day 1 Recap

Such great news to hear that Kamans in top shape. It would have been great to hear about Baron being in great shape. Its also awesome to hear that everyone already loves John Lucas, he was just an amazing pickup. I havent been this excited to see Clipper basketball in awhile.
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Old 09-30-2009, 08:43 PM   #3
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Default Re: Training Camp: Day 1 Recap

Great Stuff.. Ive bookmarked that blog.. thanks..
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Old 10-01-2009, 02:48 PM   #4
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Default Re: Training Camp: Day 1 Recap

Day 2:



Quote:
An uneventful day two at the Clippers' training camp. Young camp hopeful Taj Gray sat out the morning session. He was stationed on the sidelines next to fellow former Oklahoma star Blake Griffin, who is recovering from a bruised knee. Gray was sitting out with a sore right knee. Neither injury is serious.

Now you understand why they added four players to the team’s 14-man roster last week. Head Coach and General Manager Mike Dunleavy was still able to field three full five-man teams in spirited end-to-end action.

In a reversal from past years, the contact work is done in the longer morning session with the evening part of the two-a-days limited to non-contact work and largely to the repeating and repeating of the pages in the team’s play book. That work is done 5-on-0.

You certainly note the presence of new assistant coach John Lucas. The highly respected three-time NBA head coach fills the gym with his energy and enthusiasm. He and Tony Brown appear to be excellent additions to the Dunleavy staff that includes returnees Kim Hughes and Fred Vinson.

Add another player who has been making shots early on – Ricky Davis has been red hot in both half court and full court drills. He could be a bit of an X-factor this season. He’s a versatile wing player who has averaged as many as 20-points a game in a season during his 11-year NBA career. He seems to have his legs beneath him again this year and a resilient season from him would give the coach an unexpected added lethal weapon off a potentially very deep bench. Keep an eye on Ricky Davis, who is coming off the worst season of his career. He battled knee problems from start to finish last year and says he feels better now than he has in a long, long time.

Lawlers Law

Exctatic with that news. Buckets will be our X-Factor this year along with Thornton.

Mike Dunleavy Post-Practice Interview
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Old 10-01-2009, 05:56 PM   #5
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Day 3


Quote:
Coach Mike Dunleavy sent his squad through a series of energetic scrimmages today at the team’s Playa Vista Training Center. It marked the first formal scrimmages during the team’s training camp, which opened Tuesday.

Kareem Rush knocked down a buzzer-beater to lead the white team to a come-from-behind victory in the first eight minute game. DeAndre Jordan dominated the boards throughout the three scrimmages where-in the blue team won two of three.

Among the stand-outs: inside play by Craig Smith, out-side shooting by Ricky Davis, Rasual Butler and Steve Novak and active scoring from Al Thornton.

The downside, back-up point guard Sebastian Telfair suffered a left ankle sprain minutes into the morning drills.

Telfair sprained his left Ankle early in Thursday AM practice. He spent the rest of the morning getting treatment. It is not believed to be serious as he is listed as day-to-day.

Lawler's Law

I like seeing the stand-outs list, as chosen by Lawler. I expect Al to have a solid season (maybe not ppg wise, but he should be more efficient) and if Buckets can return to what he used to be (instant offense) then I'd say our bench looks pretty damn scary with him, Butler and whichever of our plethora of big men. Not to mention, Dunleavy isn't afraid to let Buckets be the point man at times.
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Old 10-01-2009, 05:58 PM   #6
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Default Re: Training Camp: Day 2 Updated

I love reading about how the new coaches are proving to be a good influence on the team. I never knew about how Lucas was such and energy guy, and how vivrant he is until I heard the blog video interview. Im hoping he will be a good influence, in having Dun loosen the reigns on Baron and allow him and the team to play at a fast pace tempo.


Im really happy to hear that Rickys tendenitis is becoming less of a problem. He could end up giving depth to clips that they only dream about last season. And If Al finds a way to playteam ball and take easier shots.. then this could really place the Clipps in a winning position.

Hopefully, everything comes together in preseason, and the Clippers are fully ready to go by opening day.
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Old 10-02-2009, 01:24 PM   #7
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Chris Kaman's Expecations of Season

Michael Eaves Impressed
Quote:
Earlier today, I caught my first glimpse of the new and improved Clippers in action. I made it to the team's facility in Playa Vista in time to catch the last few games of the morning scrimmages. Before giving you my early impressions as well as some insight I received from Mike Dunleavy during lunch, I will give you some injury updates.

Blake Griffin did not take part in any of the workouts today. He is still nursing that bruised left knee. While the rest of the team ran some games, Blake sat--rather impatiently, I might add--on the sidelines watching. Occasionally, he would get up and some shoot some free throws and mid-range jumpers before the team's training staff wrapped his knee in ice.

Dunleavy does not expect Blake to participate in any workouts this week, and said that the rookie will probably have another MRI done just to be sure the bruise is healing and he's ready for contact. Hopefully, Blake will be able to take part in drills early next week.

Sebastian Telfair also sat out the scrimmages after spraining his left ankle during the morning drills. He was seated next to Blake with his left foot propped up on a big exercise ball.

Other than those two injury notes, the Clippers collectively look very healthy and fit. The scrimmages were high-paced with high intensity. DeAndre Jordan was impressive grabbing boards and running the floor. Craig Smith scored several buckets in the paint. And Eric Gordon was driving the lane and getting the rim with regularity. Granted, it's still early in camp, but the tempo and tone look drastically different than last season, and that's without Blake Griffin even taking the court yet.

After practice, Dunleavy joined me, Don MacLean, Ralph Lawler, Mike Smith, Dain Blanton and our producer Sara Takata for lunch at Piknic in Playa Vista. It's an annual gathering we have at the beginning of camp to get the coach's ideas and plans for the upcoming season. It really helps with our tv production throughout the year.

While most of our conversation is not for mass consumption, I will share with you some overall impressions Mike has about his team and this season. As the team's general manager, he's obviously the one responsible for acquiring the new pieces, and once all the moves were made he really liked his team. Now having seen them in action for several workouts, he likes this mix of guys even more. He probably has more versatility and depth since he's been here, both of which every coach covets.

As far as a starting lineup is concerned, Dunleavy reaffirmed what he said at Media Day about the starting spots being wide open. He said the starters from last year will start atop the depth chart, but any and all spots can be won during the preseason.

He believes there are about 5-6 teams from the Western Conference who are locks for the playoffs. You don't have to be an NBA insider to figure who those squads might be. But beyond those teams, Dunleavy thinks it will be a battle for the last 2-3 playoff spots. And barring any devastating injuries, he expects the Clippers to be right in the mix.

Eaves on Sports
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Old 10-02-2009, 04:55 PM   #8
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Day 4:



Quote:
Eric Gordon has slimmed down
A good solid morning Training Camp session for Mike Dunleavy’s Clippers today. The best sight was seeing rookie Blake Griffin on the court for running and shooting drills. He’s been cleared for non-contact work and expects to participate fully by next Wednesday which would likely make him available to play in the second pre-season game at home against Portland on Friday, October 9th.

Coach gave his team the night off tonight and expects to work them hard tomorrow morning before departing Saturday afternoon for Oakland, where they’ll play the Golden State Warriors Sunday night at 6pm (KFWB-AM980).

Second year shooting guard Eric Gordon continues to sparkle in team scrimmages. He’s slimmed down a little which has given him added quickness and it shows. He has spent some time at the point guard position and is growing more comfortable there. He was a point guard throughout high school and did not move over to the shooting guard position until college at Indiana. Sebastian Telfair (ankle) will not make the trip to Oakland, so Gordon can be expected to get some minutes at the point in the pre-season opener against the Warriors. Griffin will make the trip but will not play Sunday.

So far so good in week one of camp. The work resumes tomorrow morning at 9:00 am.
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Old 10-03-2009, 05:02 PM   #9
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Quote:
Watching Clipper practice at Training Center. Make no mistake - this team will play at Faster pace than prior years.

Ralph Lawler

Good news.
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Old 10-05-2009, 03:53 AM   #10
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

It doesnt make sense for them to keep things at a slow pace when they have a lot of guys who are good on the break. Baron is at his best running and Gordon can run with him. I think this the best chance the CLipps have to be successful next year. Thorton would also perform better running.
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Old 10-05-2009, 10:34 PM   #11
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

The Clippers are definitely built for running. I don't know why they don't do it. I find it senseless to play a half court game when you have stalions out there. Hopefully Dunleavy will be out of here soon.
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Old 10-06-2009, 12:36 AM   #12
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Quote:
Originally Posted by qrich
Ralph Lawler

Good news.


oh thank God!!!
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Old 10-06-2009, 12:38 AM   #13
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ihatetimthomas
It doesnt make sense for them to keep things at a slow pace when they have a lot of guys who are good on the break. Baron is at his best running and Gordon can run with him. I think this the best chance the CLipps have to be successful next year. Thorton would also perform better running.


You are completely correct.. plus I have this suspicion that Blake will also thrive on the run.. Plus, much of the attention can be deflected from him, if the team runs a system that is quick and strikes with speed.
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Old 10-07-2009, 03:59 PM   #14
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Playing gordon at pg is a really good idea long term- even if its just practice or preseason it would be good for him and the team if he could cover the 1 and play pg-atleast at times

Maybe he's always going to be better as a sg but being versitile with who they pair him with in the backcourt in the future would be nice
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Old 10-07-2009, 05:57 PM   #15
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Default Re: Training Camp Discussion:

Quote:
Originally Posted by el gringos
Playing gordon at pg is a really good idea long term- even if its just practice or preseason it would be good for him and the team if he could cover the 1 and play pg-atleast at times

Maybe he's always going to be better as a sg but being versitile with who they pair him with in the backcourt in the future would be nice

I think he is a pure scorer so I wouldn't want for him to have to be in charge of getting others involved. Putting him at point takes away from his strengths. I want him to focus more so on scoring bc that is what he does best. I agree and think it would be wise for him to develop some pg skills so he can slide over if they need, but overall I want him at shooting guard focused on scoring.
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