Clippers: Paul George singled out by locker room after disaster

"Perplexity" among his teammates for his commitment request after elimination. They consider, according to Charania, that his words do not apply.


The Clippers' disaster is being forgotten as the Conference finals progress. In the West, Lakers and Nuggets play their third game tonight, with the Rocky Mountains forced to win (they brushed victory in the second) to avoid seeing themselves with an almost definitive 3-0 against. They come, it must be remembered, to overcome a 3-1 to the Jazz in the first round and the Clippers in the second. That heroism left the NBA without the long-awaited tie between the two LA teams, something that still hasn't happened in the history of the playoffs.

The Clippers, a team thought to be champions, let themselves go up in the second parts of the three games that cost them elimination, and finished off their absurdity with a lousy second half in the seventh game, in which there was no trace of their two big stars, Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. Doc Rivers lost almost every tactical battle with Michael Malone, and the Clippers had no discipline, no cohesion, no clear game plan, and, it was obvious, group chemistry to tackle the most difficult moments of the tie. It wasn't a worked team during the season, and it was obvious in the playoffs.

Beyond the fact that Kawhi Leonard was very bad in the seventh game and could not be the most decisive player of the series against the Nuggets (it was Nikola Jokic), almost all eyes were focused on Paul George, lazy throughout the tie and who According to journalist Shams Charania, he accumulated verbal crossings with several of his colleagues, who reproached him for not assuming his responsibilities. In Game 7 that cost the Clippers their first ticket to a conference final, George was 10 points on 2/11 on 3s and Kawhi on 14 on 6/22 on shooting from the field.

After the defeat, according to Charania, George made a speech in the locker room appealing to the unity and commitment of the block for the following season but was met with narrowed eyes and puzzled faces from some teammates who accused him of not applying the story. Later, before the media, George again asked for time for the project and assured, to the surprise of many, that they had not felt that this season was destined to win the title because they were a team that had been together for too little time.

What Charania does clarify is that George and Kawhi want to stay together to try again to be champions in Los Angeles. The two will have a player option at the end of a 2020-21 season that has no dates and of which Kawhi was heard saying that he had heard "February, maybe March." Doc Rivers, despite his lousy performance against the Nuggets, is also safe because he was one of the reasons Kawhi chose to sign with the Clippers. So the franchise focuses on three major free agents: Marcus Morris, a Montrelzl Harrell who will have suitors but wants to stay in LA, and a JaMychal Green who has a player option and is also expected to rack up interesting offers. In addition, the Clippers will look in the market for a playmaker, a player who can generate game for his teammates in a backcourt (bases and guards) in which neither Patrick Beverley nor Lou Williams meet that profile nor did the bet on Reggie Jackson work.

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