LOS ANGELES – Although one could fill an encyclopedia with the horrible mistakes the Clipper organization has made, I will be addressing some of the worst blunders over the years.
Big man Tom Chambers was drafted by the San Diego Clippers in the 1981 NBA draft. He led the team in scoring his rookie season. Chambers had two solid seasons with the Clips and then they traded him along with Al Wood, a 1987 second-round draft choice and a 1984 third-round draft choice to Seattle for James Donaldson, Greg Kelser, Mark Radford, Seattle’s first-round pick in 1984 and second-round pick in 1985. Tom Chambers was a 4 time NBA All-Star and the 1987 NBA All-Star Game MVP.
In 1983 the Clippers acquired Norm Nixon, Eddie Jordan and two future second-round draft choices from the L.A. Lakers for Swen Nater and the draft rights to Byron Scott. Byron Scott would become a gigantic piece for the Los Angeles Lakers on several key NBA Championship teams.
During the 1981-82 season Donald Sterling became the owner of the Clippers. He was able to move the Clippers from San Diego to Los Angeles in 1984 due to their poor play and attendance. Although the Los Angeles Clippers have recently become relevant, for the longest time all one could do is shake their head in utter disbelief at owner Donald Sterling and Clipper management.
During the 1984-85 season, the Clippers traded Terry Cummings, Craig Hodges and Ricky Pierce to the Milwaukee Bucks for Marques Johnson, Harvey Catchings, Junior Bridgeman and cash. Once again the Clippers received nothing but junk. Terry Cummings and Ricky Pierce had excellent careers with the Bucks, fans who watched the NBA in the 80′s remember them well. Craig Hodges would go on to make a name for himself with the Chicago Bulls becoming a key reserve for two NBA Championship teams as well as winning three NBA Three-Point Shootout contests.
The Clippers have made many mistakes over the years which have cost them dearly and one can only ponder what might have been. Stay tuned for part two as it only gets worse for the Clippers before it gets better!