Los Angeles Clippers Were Not Of The NBA's Elite Prior To Chris Paul's Injury

By christopherbrown
Soobum Im – USA TODAY Sports

Injuries happen. While average teams in the NBA can sell their misfortune as temporary setbacks to their fans to keep them optimistic as to what’s never going to come, elite teams go about business as usual, rarely missing a beat and often finding a treasure buried at the end of the bench.

When Los Angeles Clipper utility guard Chris Paul crashed to the floor against the Dallas Mavericks, as did the notion that the Clippers were among the league’s elite. Yet, it wasn’t simply due to the fact that the Clippers lost their best player, but because they were running out of scoring options after the loss of knock-down shooter JJ Redick.

Head coach Doc Rivers experimented with a variety of lineups to compliment Paul in Redick’s absence, but Redick’s ability to take and make the shot he was given makes for a more fluid offense than an over-creating Jamal Crawford, or the on again off again Jared Dudley.

Redick is set to return to the lineup soon, and he’s sure to have a lot of company on the wings. Backup point guard Darren Collison doesn’t collapse defenses or draw double teams, making the few inches of daylight Redick needs to fire off a shot overshadowed by uncharitable defenders with long arms.

Virtually every scoring opportunity for the Clippers is created by Paul. The lack of a second playmaker at any position is why this Clippers team cannot be considered an elite one. In a game of mismatches, the Pacific Division Champion create very few.

ChristopherBrown is an NBA writer for RantSporrts.com. Follow him on Twitter @whatrockschris. Like him on Facebook. Christopher-Rant Sports.  

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