In the world of professional basketball, preseason games often serve as a warm-up, a time for veterans to ease into the new season gradually. However, Tyronn Lue, the coach of the Los Angeles Clippers, had different ideas for his star players, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. In this article, we take a closer look at how they are following the Clippers’ urgency plan and the early takeaways from their preseason performance.
Setting the Tone from Day One
Lue, who has coached renowned players like LeBron James, understands the mindset of veteran players all too well. He aimed to change the status quo by establishing the team’s identity from the very first day of preseason. The key theme of their training camp revolves around injecting an urgency that was sometimes lacking last season.
> "I know it doesn’t count, but we still can establish … offensively pushing the pace, attacking the basket, having great spacing defensively and being physical one through five, just bringing our physicality," Lue emphasized.
This proactive approach has left fans and analysts intrigued about what this urgency plan means for the Clippers’ upcoming season.
Preseason Opener Insights
The Clippers’ first preseason game against the Utah Jazz may not have revealed the full extent of their capabilities, with key players like Russell Westbrook and Nicolas Batum resting. However, it did provide some valuable insights:
- Westbrook’s Role: Russell Westbrook appears to be firmly entrenched as the starting ball-handler. This makes opportunities for other players, such as young guard Bones Hyland, alongside stars Leonard and George, potentially rare.
> "I just love Bones’ aggression," George said. "We appreciate that from the guard spot so he’ll tie in well with what we’re doing."
- Execution Matters: Hyland and the team executed plays well, irrespective of the outcome, showing a commitment to precise execution.
Lue’s Priorities: Physicality and Pace
Tyronn Lue’s coaching priorities for the Clippers are evident in the early preseason performance:
Physicality: Lue wanted the team to be more physical defensively, and this showed as they forced 12 turnovers and scored 16 points off them before halftime.
Pace: Kawhi Leonard’s faster transition play and an overall improved pace were notable changes. The team’s ability to push the ball in transition is a focus of their preseason training.
Intensity from the Start: Veterans like Leonard and George displayed intensity right from the opening moments of the season, aligning with Lue’s bigger-picture priorities.
> "I thought we played like we practiced," George said, highlighting their consistency.
Roster Development Challenges
For the Clippers, roster development has its challenges:
Brandon Boston Jr.: The young forward’s potential is intriguing, but his first preseason appearance was cut short due to a left knee bruise, leaving room for doubt about his availability in the upcoming games.
KJ Martin: Acquired from Houston in a July trade, KJ Martin faces a steeper learning curve. With the Clippers, he’s adjusting to a new system and the complexities of playing multiple positions. This transition presents a unique set of challenges.
The Clippers’ urgency plan is making waves in the preseason, and fans are eager to see how it translates into the regular season. As Kawhi Leonard and Paul George lead the charge, the team’s approach to physicality, pace, and roster development will be closely monitored, providing a captivating narrative for the upcoming NBA season.
Relevant Topics for Consideration
Are Kawhi Leonard & Paul George eligible for a contract extension?
Both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George are eligible for contract extensions, yet no agreement has been reached with the LA Clippers. Despite this, both players have publicly expressed their desire to remain with the Clippers. However, a sense of urgency to finalize the extensions before the upcoming season is notably absent. The situation raises questions about the timing and terms of these potential extensions.
Will Kawhi Leonard & Paul George return to Clippers vs Nuggets?
In the upcoming Clippers vs Nuggets matchup, will Kawhi Leonard and Paul George make their return to the court? According to Chris Haynes, there have been notable developments. Haynes reported during the TNT broadcast that "Paul George has gradually progressed to the court, where he’s doing 4-on-4 work with the coaching staff in a controlled contact." Fans eagerly await their return to the Clippers’ lineup for this crucial game.
Are the Clippers losing optimism in a Kawhi Leonard return?
Is the Clippers’ optimism waning regarding Kawhi Leonard’s return? Earlier this month, AllClippers raised questions about the situation, suggesting that hope might be diminishing, but also leaving the door slightly ajar. Additionally, it was noted that Paul George’s status was contingent on a re-evaluation after a three-week period of non-contact ramp-up. Chris Haynes has further insights to provide on this ongoing development.
Who are Paul George & Kawhi Leonard?
Who exactly are Paul George and Kawhi Leonard? Both these notable basketball players bring unique backgrounds to the game. Paul George, a University of Oregon graduate, hails from the Oregon coast. Together, they demonstrated the urgency that Clippers coach Tyronn Lue anticipates from his team, even in a preseason loss to the Jazz.
Why did Tyronn Lue implement an urgency plan for the Clippers?
Why did Coach Tyronn Lue introduce an urgency plan for the Clippers? In a statement on Monday, Lue, who also served as an assistant with Team USA over the summer, emphasized the need for the Clippers to elevate their level of play in order to secure a top playoff seeding for the upcoming season.
What did Paul George say about Kawhi Leonard?
What insights did Paul George provide about Kawhi Leonard? In a recent statement shared through Taylor Rooks of NBA on TNT, Paul George offered a glimpse into Kawhi Leonard’s off-court persona. George highlighted, "People don’t realize that he is as normal as possible," shedding light on the human side of Leonard. Their partnership in the Clippers system has allowed George to observe this firsthand.
Are Kawhi Leonard & Paul George affected by NBA load management rules?
Are Kawhi Leonard and Paul George influenced by the NBA’s load management rules? Contrary to what many may assume, the Los Angeles Clippers’ star players, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, do not fall under the purview of these rules. Surprisingly, they remain unaffected by them, setting themselves apart in how they manage their playing time.
Are the Clippers playing without Kawhi Leonard & Paul George?
Are the Clippers taking the court without Kawhi Leonard and Paul George? Indeed, they are. Despite the absence of these star players, the Clippers are managing to keep the game close, trailing the Suns by just three points at halftime, with a score of 54-51. This underlines their team’s resilience and determination in the face of key player absences.
Why did Tyronn Lue emphasize urgency in the Clippers’ training camp?
Why did Tyronn Lue emphasize urgency in the Clippers’ training camp? With 11 years of NBA experience, Lue is well-versed in how players may tend to ease into exhibition games. However, he is determined to steer the team clear of that mentality. The urgency plan serves as a countermeasure, ensuring that the Clippers don’t fall into the trap of complacency during preseason.