The LA Clippers took a 131-110 beating in a game that wasn’t really close throughout.


A couple of weeks ago, Kawhi Leonard was asked if he paid attention to the standings and he replied that he did not. Perhaps the team as a whole doesn’t pay much attention to the standings, because the way they came out against the New Orleans Pelicans on Saturday, it was as if they didn’t fully comprehend what was at stake.

The starters immediately fell behind 8-0 and that set the entire tone for the rest of the game. From the get-go, the Clippers were unable to contain Brandon Ingram who scored 14 points in the first quarter alone on drives to the basket, midrange jumpers, and a couple of three-point shots.

The Clippers also kept losing sight of Trey Murphy III, who added 12 points in the opening period including a couple of wide-open threes. It was similar to Thursday against the Oklahoma City Thunder when Clippers head coach Tyronn Lue had to turn to his bench to get the team back in the game. Sure enough, he went with Terance Mann, Bones Hyland, Mason Plumlee, and Nicolas Batum. But unlike Thursday, the bench was outplayed as well.

Even with each Clipper run to try and close the gap, the Pelicans would respond. There was never really a time where it felt like the Pelicans would relinquish control of the game. According to Lue, the poor start to the game was what really determined what happened.

“To start the game they were faster than us. They got out in transition, they created mismatches in transition because of the way they pushed it, the way they would get back and get matched,” Lue said. “Ingram came out and got to his spots early in the game and when we tried to double team it opened up Murphy to get threes, just kind of pick your poison. I thought they really came out to attack us.”

While the Clippers were struggling with the equally depleted Pelicans, the Phoenix Suns were busy putting away the Philadelphia 76ers. As a result, the Clippers’ time in fourth place in the West was short-lived. They flip-flopped with the Suns and are now back in fifth. They are essentially tied with the Golden State Warriors for sixth.

If there wasn’t a sense of urgency on Saturday, it definitely needs to be there on Monday against the Chicago Bulls.


-Bones Hyland had his second straight productive game off the bench although much of his production against the Pelicans came when the game was already decided. Nevertheless, he’s shown the ability to light a spark for this team. The Clippers as a whole are an older team that struggles with younger, athletic teams like the Pelicans. Hyland is perfect for that type of play. Now it isn’t as easy as saying that Hyland should get more minutes because of these past two games. But against certain matchups, Hyland might have earned himself some spot minutes.

David Yapkowitz

David Yapkowitz

David is in his sixth season as credentialed media at Los Angeles Clippers games and second season covering the team for 213 Hoops. He also covers the game at the college and high school levels. When his professional basketball dreams did not materialize, he turned to the next best thing, writing about it.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments