You’ll have to forgive the Clippers announcers hyperbole through this (or you can just turn the sound down — they shouldn’t be comparing Blake Griffin to Michael Jordan inside the United Center), but this was still must see video.
The Clippers are still lob city, they still put on an arial show night after night. They did it in Chicago with Griffin and DeAndre Jordan throwing down four huge dunks inside of two minutes. The last one, the putback dunk by Jordan over Marco Belinelli and Griffin, was the best of the bunch.
And while you get dazzled by the show, the Clippers are playing good defense and are a legit playoff threat in the West. The path to the finals still goes through Oklahoma City in the West, but the team from Los Angeles that pushes them hardest may not be the one everyone predicted before the season.
Golden State head coach Steve Kerr and assistant coach Ron Adams didn’t go along with that narrative. Now, another Warriors assistant is explaining more clearly just what the heck West was talking about.
This is probably a minimum contract. The Spurs still have whatever of the mid-level exception they didn’t give Marco Belinelli or the bi-annual exception. But that’s not way more than the minimum ($2,176,260) for Cunningham, who has nine years experience – and probably couldn’t command more, anyway.
Unlike Rudy Gay, Belinelli, Davis Bertans and Bryn Forbes, Cunningham is San Antonio’s first free-agent signing this summer who didn’t previously play for the team. He’s a combo forward who will likely be needed more at small forward. He can handle larger small forwards, and Belinelli can play the three against smaller opposing small forwards in a platoon.
Cunningham is a solid defender in the right matchup, and he holds his own as a 3-point shooter. The Spurs should use him well.
Of course, the Spurs must first determine what to do about Leonard before fitting in more pliable pieces like Cunningham.
“I don’t leak nothing. I always say what’s on my mind, so you don’t never see me saying, ‘I think I should say this now and let it leak.’ I don’t do that.”
It would be more in-character for LaVar just to announce Lonzo’s knee injury or – especially now that the Lakers are publicly acknowledging Lonzo’s need for surgery – brag now about his maneuvering. So, maybe he wasn’t behind this.
But it still could have been someone else in Lonzo’s camp, with or without LaVar’s knowledge.
The Balls don’t need to apologize if they disclosed Lonzo’s injury. It’s his knee. He can say what he wants about it, however it affects the Lakers.
But these accusations and subsequent denials certainly don’t signal a strong relationship between the team and player.