The Los Angeles Clippers are another example of a team with high expectations and even self hype and promotion, without accomplishing anything substantial. Here is a short list of teams that came to mind when thinking about totally overblown confidence.
- 2011 Philadelphia Eagles – The Eagles made splash in free agency that year, seemingly loading up their team with big names. But before the season began, Vince Young, a back-up QB for the Eagles (in what would be his final season in the league) called his team a “dream team”. It was all over from there. You can get into more of the specific by reading a story from Bleacher Report on the nightmarish season, but they finished 8-8.
- 2011 Miami Heat – What was up with 2011? Anyway. You’ll recall the media frenzy and the presser with the lights and LeBron saying that he, D-Wade, and Chris Bosh were going to win a bunch of Championships in Miami. The lost to the Mavericks in the Finals.
- My 2013 Lakers – They had added Steve Nash Dwight Howard to the roster. That would do it right? They fired Mike Brown and hired Mike D’Antoni early in the season, but ended up going 45-37, Kobe tore his achilles before the end of the regular season, and they got swept in the first round of the playoffs.
- Again, my Lakers 2004 – Just pretend Karl Malone and Gary Payton didn’t try to ring chase by joining Kobe, Shaq, and Phil. Just act like they didn’t get smacked in the face by the Pistons in the finals and lose 4-1.
A lot of NBA teams on this list. What do you notice? Just cause a team make a splash with a bunch of names does not mean it will win. If you have read the Book of Basketball by Bill Simmons, then you know the secret to winning. Being a team. Throw all of the lists and paper matchups. What matters more than advanced analytics is when players are willing to sacrifice to be the best version of themselves for the team. Chemistry is real. So as much as I will kill PG13 below, he realizes the ugly truth, “we aren’t a team yet… we didn’t have enough time.” Now, does that excuse them? No.
Anyway… back to the Clippers. I present to you a few videos that just make this all the more damning for the Clippers.
- Clippers mortgaged their first round draft picks from 2021 to 2026 – so yeah, kind of a win now situation and expectations
- Paul George signed to a max deal and takes up almost 25% of the cap space for 2020 – more than Kawhi – so yeah, time to win
- Many of the core contributors will be unrestricted free agents or have player options, most notably is both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have player options after 2021 – maybe this year was important?
- Up 3-1 in a series. 3-1. THREE TO ONE.
- Clippers asking to be subbed out in the 4th Quarter of a game 7
- Kawhi/PG not scoring in the 4th quarter
- Clippers cannot outrace their legacy of being second fiddle to The Lakers NBA