The Los Angeles Clippers have been led to third-place in the Western Conference behind a multitude of players on their team. However, they’ve hands-down gotten the most production from their two superstars, Chris Paul and Blake Griffin who were the only Clippers with Player Efficiency Ratings over 20. There is now a third player in that category, though.
Chauncey Billups returned from injury for Los Angeles on Feb. 8 after only playing three games in early December. Since then, he’s played exceptionally well and has a PER of 20.34. In the nine games that he’s played in, he’s averaged 19.4 points, 4.1 assists and 1.3 steals per 36 minutes and has shot the ball at an incredibly efficient 48.1 percent from the field and 44.7 percent from three-point range.
Billups has emerged from the injured reserve to becoming a reliable deep-shooter and someone who they can start over Willie Green, who failed to produce while starting at the two-guard with Billups out.
More than that, Billups also offers the confidence and composure of a veteran who has been through the rigors of the NBA Playoffs before back when he won a title with the Detroit Pistons. He’s obviously not the same player that he was then, but for a young Clippers team that hasn’t had the experience of a long playoff-run, Billups will be there to calm the team and tell them what it takes to be successful in the post-season.
Billups is no longer an All-Star guard in this league. However, his value to the Clippers can’t be understated. He’s a sharp-shooter, a veteran and a calming force; those are all the things Los Angeles needs to potentially make a run deep into the playoffs.