“Clippers Curse About to End?”
I wasn’t here when they were here, but I heard so many bad tales about the San Diego Clippers-the Sports Arena and villified owner Donald Sterling.
Actually they were a pretty good team that moved here from Buffalo, where they used to be the Braves. Randy Smith, Lloyd Free, Tom Chambers et all.
They never recovered from the Bill Walton trade, bringing him back home.
But the Clippers never recovered from the ownership of the selfish-greedy-racist owner either.
Claimed alot of players careers. Wrecked the careers of some good basketball people too, like Paul Silas and Elgin Baylor. Then destroyed himself as the NBA League office expelled Sterling from the league.
But this is a different era, under new owner Steve Ballmer.
They are where they have never been before, the NBA Western Conference finals.
They are doing it without the Aztecs superstar Kawhi Leonard, out with a strained knee. The have big time firepower in Paul George, who is an erratic enigma.
They have guys off the street, guards Reggie Williams, the shooter, and the spoiler that is the brat personality of Patrick Beverly.
Their big center, Ivika Zubac shows up and goes 15-points-16 rebounds.
Somehow the Clippers outscore the run-and gun Suns (21-3) in the third period to blow the game open.
LA mugged them on defense, and drilled lots of shots to get a victory that they had to have.
On any given night, any of them can hurt you, and they did in the Thursday win over the Suns, a win they had to secure.
And journeyman coach Tyronn Lue hit enough buttons and pulled enough levers to guide this group to a win…after they went down (0-2) in Phoenix.
No problem because this team has trailed (0-2) in every series in this summer run of basketball.
Both teams are battered right now, Devin Booker playing with a broken nose, Chris Paul trying to shrug off the after effects of Covid exposure.
The amazing fact, if the Clippers can win this series, they could actually win the NBA championship. In the East, Atlanta is a 1-man gang, led by the Trae Young. Milwaukee is streaky and not very trustworthy once you get beyond Giannis and Krhis Middleton.
Who could imagine that as a possibility.
Curse of the Clippers, the Donald Sterling era of error, it just might go away.
Saturday night’s game will be a barn burner, but this edition of the Clippers this year, shows how good they can be, after all those awful years in the NBA.