Tag: Josh Smith

Toronto Raptors v New York Knicks

Report: Veteran forward Chuck Hayes agrees to deal with Clippers


Chuck Hayes is the kind of veteran big man fans should want on their team. He brings leadership, good defense in the post, strength on the glass, he sets solid screens, and he just hustles everywhere on the court. Teammates love playing with him.

Clipper fans should be happy.

After Hayes’ deal with Houston had fallen apart, he has turned around and reached terms with the Los Angeles Clippers, reports Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports.

This is officially a make good, non-guaranteed deal. The Clippers have 14 guaranteed contracts already, so there is space for one more deal on the roster.

Doc Rivers the GM has had a good summer and this is another part of that.

Obviously, the Clippers will start Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan up front. But now behind them there is Josh Smith, Cole Aldrich, and Hayes. That means Rivers can rest his stars more — maybe even throw in some nights off — and know he has solid veterans who will make plays behind them.

This is another move that puts the Clippers right up there with the Warriors, Spurs, Rockets, and Thunder as legit title contenders come out of the West. And the Clippers are as deep as any of them.

Report: Clippers have had discussions with veteran forward Chris Singleton

Chris Singleton

The Clippers made major upgrades to their bench this summer, bringing in Lance Stephenson, Josh Smith and Cole Aldrich. But they’re still looking around for depth, and the Los Angeles Times‘ Brad Turner reports that they’ve had discussions with three-year veteran forward Chris Singleton:

Singleton hasn’t played in the NBA since 2013-14, and hasn’t really proven himself to be a consistent rotation player. It couldn’t hurt to give him a training camp invite, but if the Clippers are looking to add another player that might stick around beyond training camp, the one position they’re still a little thin at is point guard. Beyond Chris Paul, their main options are Pablo Prigioni and Austin Rivers, neither of whom is really a viable full-time backup. Signing Singleton wouldn’t really help them there, but they could do worse if they’re just looking for bodies for camp.

Report: Clippers, Glen Davis still talking about potential deal

Los Angeles Clippers v Houston Rockets - Game Two

The Clippers have an improved front line rotation. Of course Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan will start (and get the most minutes), but now behind them will come Josh Smith and Cole Aldrich. Brenden Dawson is in the mix. Plus, Paul Pierce can play some four (and Griffin some five) if the Clippers want to go small and run even more. Doc Rivers has options.

Does Rivers need Glen Davis, too?

Big Baby has been mulling playing overseas, but his people and the Clippers are still talking, reports Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times.

The Clippers have 14 guaranteed contracts on the books (Dallas has a full 15, they would be offering a partially guaranteed deal as they did JaVale McGee). Many teams leave the 15th slot open, allowing them flexibility in trades and signings as the season goes forward.

Do the Clippers need one more big at the end of the bench more than that flexibility? Davis averaged 12.2 minutes a game last season, and that would drop to spot duty this season — Davis would be at the end of the bench and out of the regular rotation. That’s where he lands on most rosters at this point in his career — he’s the “break glass in case of emergency” big.

But for now, Doc and the Clippers are still thinking about it.

Blake Griffin says depth will make Clippers better, especially come playoffs

San Antonio Spurs v Los Angeles Clippers - Game Two

Doc Rivers the GM tied the hands of Doc Rivers the coach last season — their lack of depth caught up with the Clippers. Players emptied their tanks into beating the San Antonio Spurs in the first round, then got up 3-1 on the Rockets with a big lead in the second half of Game 5 — then just ran out of gas. Houston played better and played desperate, but the Clippers had energy left to match them.

This summer Doc the GM did well. The Clippers added Lance Stephenson, Josh Smith, Pablo Prigioni, Cole Aldrich and others who can take some pressure off a Clipper starting five that played 972 minutes more than any other Clippers lineup last season.

Blake Griffin, for one, is pumped that he will get to sit more. He told Rowan Cavner of the Clippers’ official site why it matters.

“It’ll help a lot,” Griffin said. “My third season in the league when we had that unbelievable bench, I think I dropped to like 32 minutes a game in the regular season…You definitely feel fresher toward the end, but you have to find that right balance of not holding back too much, being able to give everything. Having an elite bench is going to help us tremendously, especially come playoff time.”

Last season Griffin averaged 35.2 minutes a game to lead the Clippers, while (because they didn’t miss much time due to injuries) Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan were both in the top seven in the league in total minutes played. In his third season, Griffin did play “just” 32.5 minutes a night, the lowest in his career.

As Griffin notes, for the Clippers it is all about being right come the playoffs.

Doc Rivers is not afraid to rest players, and now he can do it and still win, still get a high seed. Do that and the Clippers are serious title contenders.

The challenge is there are at least four other teams in the West alone that can make that claim.

Stan Van Gundy not worried about hack-a-Drummond strategy next season

Memphis Grizzlies v Detroit Pistons

It happened to DeAndre Jordan and Dwight Howard seemingly every game. It happened to guys such as Josh Smith, although less often.

But when it came to the Pistons’ Andre Drummond, there was not a lot of hack-a-Drummond taking place. That despite the fact he shot just 38.7 percent from the free throw stripe last season.

The Pistons should be improved this season, and Drummond should be at the heart of it — he had 27 points and 16 rebounds in the Team USA exhibition last week. He’s going to draw more attention and it he’s shooting around 40 percent from the line there will be hacking.

His coach, Stan Van Gundy, told Zach Lowe of Grantland on his podcast that he’s not worried about it (hat tip to the Detroit Free Press).

 “We had teams do it,” said Van Gundy. “Quite honestly if we get better we’ll see it more. I had Dwight Howard and I also had Shaq (Shaquille O’Neal) so I’ve been through this before. In terms of wins and losses it just hasn’t been that effective. It might be effective for a possession or two….

“I don’t think it’s hopeless,” said Van Gundy. “I think my hope would be that this year we could get him up over 50% and we could start pushing 60%. If you get him over 50% then it’s not really an effective strategy. If you get to 52% then you’re having a quality possession.”

The average NBA team averaged 1.025 points per possession last season, so you can see where Van Gundy is going here — even at 52 percent that’s well above average.

The Pistons are talking extension with Drummond, and they will give him the max (it is possible the sides decide to do what Kawhi Leonard did with the Spurs and wait to sign next summer, giving them more cap space to chase free agents). The Pistons are going to pay Drummond to be their future, their cornerstone.

Will free throws be his Achilles heel, or will he knock enough down to take that off the table?