The LA Clippers had a disappointing 2019-20 season. Last year they were the favorites for the title and ended up as the 2nd seed in the stacked Western Conference. But in the playoffs, they choked in their series against the Denver Nuggets.
LA Clippers transactions: Players signed via trades and free agency
The Clippers’ biggest acquisition was center Serge Ibaka. Ibaka is a versatile big man who is a good defender and can also stretch the floor for the team. Last season, Ibaka had a career high averaging 15.4 points, 1.4 assists and 8.2 rebounds per game. He also was impressive from the 3-point line averaging 38.5%. The Clippers have a decent center in Ivica Zubac who had a decent season, but Ibaka is a much-needed upgrade on the center position.
They also added a great sharpshooter in Luke Kennard from the Detroit Pistons. In his third year in the league, Kennard posted career high numbers averaging 15.8 points, 3.5 rebounds and 4.1 assists in 32.9 minutes per game.
Kennard was also impressive from the 3-point line last season, converting 39.9% of his 6.5 attempts. Kennard is a great addition to the roster and will be a big 3 point threat alongside Marcus Morris.
The other addition for the Clippers was Nicolas Batum. He is a good versatile wing who is also a solid defender and can move the ball with ease. Batum has had a tumultuous couple of seasons.
The Clippers will hope that Batum can replicate some of his 2016-17 form where he averaged 15.1 points, 5.9 assists and 6.2 rebounds per game. He could be a decent rotation player for them.
Apart from that, the Clippers re-signed some key players. They have re-signed power forward Marcus Morris in a 4-year deal worth $64 million. Morris was a decent addition for the side, but re-signing him for such a steep price might be an overpay on the team’s end.
It has been months since the LA Clippers suffered defeat against the Denver Nuggets, but…
Apart from Morris, they re-signed Reggie Jackson. Jackson was the primary backup to Patrick Beverley. He is much better playmaker than Beverley and will play a crucial role in Clippers’ backcourt. They also re-signed Patrick Patterson who adds more depth to the frontcourt.
The Clippers haven’t signed a primary playmaker this off-season. Beverley is a fantastic defender, but when it comes to playmaking, he is probably not the answer. The Clippers added a good center but still did not address their problem area.
Players the Clippers lost
The biggest loss for the Clippers was losing out on their free agent, Montrezl Harrell. Harrel was the primary center for the team and was their third best scoring option for the team. Losing out on him, that too, to their cross city rivals, will sting them more. They did get a good replacement in Ibaka.
The other player they lost in free agency was JaMychal Green. Green was a decent backup power forward for the team. The Clippers have replaced him with Nicolas Batum, which might be a gamble considering his tumultuous last two seasons.
They traded their rotation guard Landry Shamet to the Brooklyn Nets. Shamet was a rotation shooting guard but added little to the team’s offense. They have brought in Luke Kennard, who might be a big upgrade on him.
The Clippers have replaced some of their underperforming rotation players and signed a great starting center to replace Harrell’s loss. But they still did not get a good playmaker. Multiple reports emerged they were in talks with Rajon Rondo. A player like Rondo would have addressed all their issues. Will they regret not offering money to the 4-time All-star? Only time will tell.
Get notified about breaking news and watch highlights on the go; join the Arena on NBA Hoops