How are some of our favorite (and not so favorite) former Clippers doing now that they’ve left the team? Robert Flom and I took a look around the league to put together a January roundup of some names Clippers fans will recognize and checked in on how each of these guys is doing.
Chris Paul: CP3 has been on a bit of a ride since he left the Clippers. Originally, LA traded him (at his behest) to the Houston Rockets, where he seemingly overcame his demons by finally making the Western Conference Finals and even going up 3-2… before missing the final two games of the series with an injury as the inevitable Warriors advanced. After two years with James Harden, the Rockets traded Chris (this time not at his behest) and two first-round picks for Russell Westbrook. The picks are significant because Chris Paul is better at basketball than Russell Westbrook. He joined a team of Clipper castoffs in Oklahoma City and took them to a surprise playoff berth, earning a ticket back to contention via trade. I’d hoped for it to be back to the Clippers, but the Phoenix Suns decided to accelerate their rebuild and outbid the other interested teams. The Suns are 7-4 to start the year, and CP3 has been a big part of it. If things keep up, he could easily be playing against one of the LA teams in the second round this year. – Lucas Hann
DeAndre Jordan: At age 32, DJ’s production has fallen off a cliff. His scoring and rebounding numbers are down huge from last season, while his turnovers are up. His defense, which has slowed in recent years, is now just bad. DJ has the height and leaping ability to still contest shots at the basket, but his movement outside the paint is extremely limited. Good for him for securing a 4 year, $40M last summer, because right now he’s looking like a vet minimum, locker presence type of player. – Robert Flom
Blake Griffin: Perhaps no beloved former Clipper has had a sadder career arc than Blake. He had a great 2018-19 season with the Pistons, earning All-NBA 3rd team honors, but missed most of the next year due to injury and has fallen off a cliff. The issue isn’t his ability declining so much as his mobility–he really can’t move any more, and as a result is averaging just 14 points, 6 rebounds, and 4 assists on 38% shooting for the worst team in the NBA. Maybe as a 33-year-old free agent in the 2022 off-season he’ll be able to latch on to a good team in a limited role where he can still be effective… but it’s not looking good. – Lucas Hann
J.J. Redick: At 35 years old last season, J.J. missed the playoffs for the first time in his career as the New Orleans Pelicans fell short in the bubble. This season, he’s off to a rough start, shooting just 29.5% from deep through 9 games, but it’s probably premature to count him out. I don’t have high hopes for the Pelicans’ playoff chances this year (though they could be a play-in team), but JJ will be a floor-spacer and veteran locker room presence for an extremely young, very talented team. Keep an eye on his $13M expiring deal this deadline as well. I don’t think he makes sense as a Clipper target but contenders looking for an extra shooter could come calling. – Lucas Hann
Austin Rivers: After an ironic stint as Chris Paul’s teammate in Houston (so much for the overblown rumors that CP3 hated Austin), the younger Rivers has now found his newest stage: Madison Square Garden, where he’s thriving so far for the Knicks, averaging 12 points, 3 assists, and 2 rebounds in a prominent bench role. His 53% FG and 48% 3PT efficiency won’t hold up, but you just know that Austin is going to have some epic nights at the Garden. He’s just starting a 3-year, $10M deal in New York with the second and third years non-guaranteed, so if he’s playing well don’t be surprised if the hopeless Knicks end up flipping him to a playoff team desperate for guard depth. – Lucas Hann
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: It’s a good thing that Paul George signed a maximum extension for four more years after this season and is playing at an MVP level, because if he didn’t stick around the Shai trade regret would be too much to bear. After putting up 19/6/3 last year and taking the Thunder to the playoffs with fellow former Clippers Chris Paul and Danilo Gallinari, OKC was supposed to be last in the conference this year. They also lost Dennis Schroder and Steven Adams in off-season deals, clearly leaning fully into a rebuild. Yeah, no. Shai’s averaging 21 points, 7 assists, and 5 rebounds, shooting 35% from deep on 6 attempts a game, and has the Thunder sitting at 5-4. I hope the Clippers win a ring with PG, because a decade-plus of SGA would have been really, really special. – Lucas Hann
Avery Bradley: Everyone’s least favorite recent Clipper is doing well. After winning a ring last year with the Lakers (despite not playing for them in the playoffs), Bradley signed with the Heat as a free agent. He’s filling much the same role with them as he has the past couple seasons – as a perimeter hound on defense and spot-up shooter on offense. He’s shot the ball exceptionally well as a member of the Heat, and when his shooting inevitably craters, he will be the same mediocre guard as ever. – Robert Flom
Jerome Robinson: Jerome has somehow won the trust of Wizards’ head coach Scott Brooks – but the ire of Wizards’ fans. While his defensive abilities that he showed in his last few months with the Clippers are still present, his offensive game remains as lamentable as ever. His 4th year contract was turned down by the Wiz, so unless he shows something over the next 60 games, there’s a good chance he’s out of the NBA next year. – Robert Flom
Moe Harkless: A much more likable former Clipper on the Heat is not doing nearly as well. Harkless started the first two games for the Heat at starting power forward, but was benched after two games because of his inability to shoot and the team’s awful numbers with him on the court. He’s even received a couple DNP-CDs due to his ineffectiveness, which is shocking considering how solid he’s been in his NBA career. Moe’s defense will inevitably get him back into the rotation, and his shooting will certainly regress positively. But so far, it’s been a rough start. – Robert Flom
JaMychal Green: JaMyke missed the start of Denver’s season (and the Nuggets struggled and opened 1-4), but they’ve now won four of their last five games and he’s made a great impact off the bench, averaging 12 points and 6 rebounds (though on unsustainable shooting). It’s a real shame that the Clippers couldn’t keep JaMyke under the hard cap this off-season. Even with the surprising emergence of Nicolas Batum, JaMyke would give the Clippers another 6’8″ player who can shoot and defend–something that they could really use in their rotation. I’m definitely rooting for JaMychal, who was a great Clipper, but I hope the Nuggets struggle enough that we don’t have to face them in the playoffs again this year. – Lucas Hann
Montrezl Harrell: Trez’s numbers are down somewhat as a Laker, especially in scoring volume, but his efficiency is up. He’s been essentially the same player with the Lakers, and that’s been valuable in getting them buckets when LeBron and Anthony Davis are sitting. His defense has been as poor as ever, and Lakers fans have already been frustrated with how much he’s played a couple times, but the real test of the Harrell signing will be in the playoffs. We all know he will be good in the regular season. – Robert Flom
What other former Clippers are up to good things around the league? Have you lost track of any favorites from the last few years? Hit up the comments and let us know.
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