All season long, the Clippers’ opponents have felt the heat of the 3-point lineup.
Tyronn Lue’s team continue to be the best shooting team in the NBA – 41.7% – behind the arc. It’s not that far from the Charlotte Hornets’ record 42.8% rate of 1996-97. Seven regulars of the Clippers shoot better than 40% behind the arc.
Credit goes to his stars, Lue said, expressing his gratitude for Paul George (who is one of seven, who achieved a career record 42.1% at depth) and Kawhi Leonard (fair 39.6%) for adhering to the post-game way of playing that Lue preaches.
“We run any game – Kawhi, PG, Marcus (Morris Sr.), who we run it for – but once the ball is in their hands and the teams make a double team or they make a movement and as teams help, they have to be able to make the right play and that turn into a drive-and-kick or drive-kick-swing-get-it-to-the-paint, ”Lue said. “Play your teammates.”
Just as Lue wrote before the start of the season.
These “play-after-the-play” streaks include those in which the Clippers could, for example, send a pass to Leonard. A lot of times the All-Star forward will attract a second defender, so he’ll give the ball to Reggie Jackson on the perimeter. Then it’s up to Jackson to quickly throw a pass to, say, George, who could do it again, to a wide-open Patrick Patterson – just add water: Splash.
The Clippers are shooting a 44.7% NBA best on 3-pointers taken with the closest defenseman 6 feet or higher, and they get nearly 16 of those looks per game.
“I’ve always been a huge fan of playing only with our best offensive players and then these guys who make plays for everyone,” Lue said during the preseason. “We’re running a play for Kawhi or PG, Lou (Williams), any of our guys, Luke (Kennard), Marcus, that if we don’t have it and they pass out of the room, so we’re going to keep playing without getting stuck and stagnating. So that was our main focus for the last three or four days, to teach us how to play after the game and the guys are doing a good job of figuring that out.
And the Clippers have improved since then, although it took half the season to make it up. So said Lue ahead of practice on Saturday, when the Clippers prepared for Sunday morning against the surprisingly successful New York Knicks, the last home of the regular season. game this season.
“I feel like at the start of the season we struggled, trying to figure out what we wanted and how we wanted to play and the style we wanted to play,” said Lue. “(Leonard and George) had to figure out when to get a midrange pull-up, when to attack the basket, when to make the play for their teammates.
“And I’m telling you, after the All-Star break, I think we really took off offensively, because these two guys bought… to be able to score basketball, but still be able to make their teammates better. It’s a fine line and it’s hard to overlap that line when you’re so good offensively.
“We just want to keep building the final two weeks of this season,” said Lue, always thinking about the future – game after game.
KNICKS (37-30) at CLIPPERS (45-22)
When: 12:30 p.m. Sunday
Or: Staples Center
TV: Bally Sports SoCal, ESPN
– LA Clippers (@LAClippers) May 8, 2021