It finally happened. After 59 games, the Clippers have their first three-game losing streak. It was split up by the All-Star break, and the first two losses of the skid were understandable. A loss to Philly on the road without Pat Bev is acceptable, and then a loss to Boston on the road without Pat Bev and without Paul George for most of the game is also acceptable. However, what many fans are deeming unacceptable is dropping the first game back against the Kings.

The Clippers are in a seeding battle. As it so often plays out in the Western Conference, the differences in seeding will be determined by just a game or two. The fans feel this urgency, as they saw the Clippers miss avoiding Golden State by just one win last season after dropping multiple winnable games down the stretch.

This season looks to be no different, as just 2.5 games separate seeds 2-5. With the Clippers sitting at 3rd, they are one game back of Denver and one game up on both Houston and Utah. That brings us to where we are a today. Home against Memphis.

Home against the even .500 and 8-seed Grizzlies should be an easy one right? If the last matchup between these two teams is any indication, that will not be the case. Memphis beat the Clippers in STAPLES Center on January 4th by a final score of 140-114.

Both teams look much different now than they did then, as the leading scorer for Memphis in that game is now in Miami. Jae Crowder, the 9.9 PPG scorer, went for 27 that afternoon and poured in six threes on his way to doing so. For anyone who has watched enough Clippers basketball, that sounds about right.

Part of the issue that game, aside from the 140 points surrendered, was that the Clippers were without Paul George and in his absence, Kawhi shot just 8/24. Two things are true about that game, the first is that Memphis exploding for 140, which is still their season high, is about as unlikely as Avery Bradley hitting a contested long two. It happens, but not very often. The same goes for Kawhi’s poor shooting night. If it takes an explosion from Memphis and an off night from Kawhi to repeat what we saw in January, the Clippers are in better shape than some may think.

There is still no official word on whether or not Pat Bev and PG are suiting up, but the last we heard was that they are both questionable. If they don’t play, as we have seen, any game is losable. This is a Memphis team looking to stop a three-game skid of their own, so the Clippers must come out focused.

With no Jaren Jackson and obviously no Jae Crowder, Memphis is losing 51 of the 140 they dropped last time. The Clippers are coming into this one with even more fire power than last time. Maurice Harkless and Jerome Robinson have essentially been replaced by Marcus Morris and Reggie Jackson. While these upgrades are substantial, the biggest upgrade must come from an energy standpoint. If the Clippers do that, this losing streak will end.

Let’s get one!

Joey Linn

Joey Linn

My name is Joey Linn, and I've been brought on by 213Hoops to contribute to this new home for Clippers content. I currently broadcast NCAA D2 basketball for Biola University, and have been following the Clippers intently since the age of nine. My passion for the Clippers, as well as in-depth and accurate analysis, will provide 213Hoops' readers with an advocate against inaccuracies surrounding the perception of our team. The Clippers need more positive and representable voices, and I'm going to deliver that through this platform. For the people in the back.

38 Comments

  • Avatar CLIPSCITY says:

    Is PG and Pat Bev still out?

  • Avatar Based Freestyle says:

    Can’t wait to hear Doc’s excuses when Valanciunas has a career performance against Trez while Zubac watches from the bench.

  • Avatar chogokin says:

    I never thought that I’d have to be worried about effort and hustle for a team with Bev and Trez on it, but here we are.

  • Avatar CLIPSCITY says:

    My question is how we are going to stop Ja without Beverley. Shamet on him isnt a good idea. Nor Reggie Jackson. Kawhi NEEDS to be on Kyle Anderson or maybe Brandon Clarke. So Ja and Valanciunas will be having career night.

    • Avatar TheGreatestShowman says:

      You want good or bad news first?

      The good. In the two meetings against the Pistons and Reggie, Ja was held in check scoring 16 and 12 points.

      The bad. Reggie went 4-13 followed by 1-16…

  • Avatar Kenneth Hansen says:

    Love the Avery Bradley joke! lol Go Clippers!

  • Avatar Minion94 says:

    Good lord, can everyone give the team without two starters and two brand new players at least 5 games before pressing the self destruct button?

    • Avatar xfactor26 says:

      To be fair, time is running out with this group and the injuries haven’t helped.

    • Avatar 8sp0rts8 says:

      agreed Minion94. fans & media are overreacting to that Kings loss, myself included. but after calming down over the weekend, the sky is definitely not falling. a title is still possible.

      it was just one of those games: Sat afternoon, offense going 4 for 24 in the first while almost every single King is hitting shot after shot (throughout the game), incorporating 2 new guys, Kings having a game under their belt out of the break while Clippers were still shaking off the rust since it was their first game back, etc.

      at the same time, i think we all want to see a little bit more urgency & effort. once the Clippers took the lead in the 4th, they should have closed it out regardless of everything that was going on. the 5 guys in there closing the game were Kawhi, Lou, Trez, Sham & Green. the “chemistry” excuse just doesn’t cut it. those 5 have had enough time together to close out a game at home against a Kings team that is under .500

      • Avatar Based Freestyle says:

        “it was just one of those games”

        When every loss is written off as “just one of those games,” it becomes meaningless. Not really sure how people can keep making excuses for a team that has never lived up to the hype all year.

        “almost every single King is hitting shot after shot”

        Again, this is a common theme in our losses, not a fluke. We play zero perimeter defense, we leave our best defenders on the bench so Lou and Trez can spend most of the game trading baskets with the other team. These are coaching issues that will apparently never be fixed because it’s easier to make excuses.

        “those 5 have had enough time together to close out a game at home against a Kings team that is under .500”

        This part is true, though. Our roster is supposedly one of the deepest teams in the league. A couple injuries shouldn’t stop us from beating bad teams like the Kings.

      • Avatar Notabandwagoner says:

        rec’d
        having dissatisfaction with the rotations and level of play isn’t the same as thinking the sky is falling. Come playoff time, things are/should be different. Hopefully they get it all figured out by then.

        I only put that picture on my profile like two weeks ago and all of a sudden it’s just there.

  • Avatar wwshep says:

    Hate to say it but these guys are spot on about the Clippers 🙁

    Starts at the 27 minute mark.

    https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-bill-simmons-podcast/id1043699613?i=1000466482450

    • Avatar KingAlfonse says:

      Simmons is a clippers hater and always has been. Definitely work to do but I take his POV on clippers with gigantic grain of salt. He has a huge ax to grind with doc too.

  • Avatar DrewsLife1012 says:

    Everyone is playing tonight!!! Finally and please stay that way (knock knock wood)

  • Avatar wwshep says:

    I hate to even bring it up… but if we lose tonight we drop to the 5th seed… will be full scale off the ledge panic time…

  • Avatar wwshep says:

    Holy Fuck! What a dunk!… Kawhi is not human. 🙂

  • FunGuyRob FunGuyRob says:

    These guys suck!!
    *smirk emoji*

  • Avatar wwshep says:

    Wow!… they came to play to tonight!… PLEASE let this team stay healthy and we can kick some serious ass!

  • Avatar DrewsLife1012 says:

    Best 1st quarter I’ve seen all season!!!!

  • Avatar wwshep says:

    Shamet a +29 in 19 minutes. That means entire Clipper lead has come with Shamet in the court.

  • Dooley Womack Dooley Womack says:

    It’s the law, you know.

  • Avatar wwshep says:

    Only downside of tonight’s game is that PG13 is -2 in a game the Clippers are winning by 33. So he continues to be disappointing. At least with him healthy we can maintain a better bench lineup so I’ll take it. But it sure would be nice if PG13 remembers how to play like an all star at some point this season.

  • Avatar wwshep says:

    And the best thing about tonight’s game was no McGruder until garbage time. YAY!… if that guy never plays a single minute other than garbage time the rest of this season I will be a happy camper. He was a god awful signing this Summer.

  • Avatar John Maclean says:

    Happy with our new guys. Morris asserted himself better and Reggie had a couple sweet passes. I wasn’t sure how Lou would respond to catch and shoot but that looked really good. Let’s hope we don’t get run off the court like zombies against another feisty young Phoenix team that doesn’t give a shit.

  • Avatar John Maclean says:

    Happy with our new guys. Morris asserted himself better and Reggie had a couple sweet passes. I wasn’t sure how Lou would respond to catch and shoot but that looked really good.