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Thursday, March 22nd, 2012 at 9:00 am  |  49 responses

Chris Paul Blames Himself for Blake Griffin’s Terrible Game


by Marcel Mutoni @marcel_mutoni

The LA Clippers continued with their losing ways last night in OKC, dropping their second in a row, and there was plenty of blame to go around.

Head coach Vinny Del Negro — whose job may be on thin ice — was overheard yelling at his team in the locker room, and then explained to the media what he thinks is wrong with the Clippers lately: a lackadaisical approah to games, poor defense and not competing hard enough.

Star forward Blake Griffin posted a career-low 7 points last night, which teammate Chris Paul said was his fault. From the Oklahoman:

“I think that’s my job to get him some easier baskets,” said Paul, who had 13 points (3 for 12 shooting) and 10 assists. “They guarded him well on the block. I’ve just got to figure out how I can be better, get him the ball in easier spots.”

Griffin shook his head as Paul’s reasoning. “No, it wasn’t that,” Griffin said. “I got open looks. I missed shots. Games like that happen. … They’ve got a lot of offense and they played well tonight.”

The biggest culprit in the Clippers’ woes may be the brutality of their schedule — LA has played 8 games in the last 11 nights, and they’re slated for another one tonight, plus 5 more before the month ends.

The Clip Show will need to find a way to cobble wins together soon, before they suddenly find themselves out of the Playoff picture.

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  • AD

    blake griffin needs to get in the gym in shoot… IMO the idea of making your teamates better is overated because if they cant make any shots, then how are they going to get better offensively. Defense takes work too… Blake just needs to get in the gym and shoot, plain and simple.

  • Paul H

    I called It ages ago, knew people clamoring to call the Clips elite was premature. Never seen the game last night tho, any truth to what Chris Paul was saying?

  • timbo slice

    cp3 is doing what a leader does, deflecting blame from his young guys onto himself, its noble but blake still has to knock the shots down.

  • http://slamonline.com YKnot

    Can’t dunk everything!

  • Jetfuel

    Not your fault, OKC is just a much better team

  • Zabbah

    They are one year removed from a chip.

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    Free throws. Please work on free throws.

  • Kadavour

    @AD: this idea that another player can make you better is a bit overblown. If a guard penetrates and kicks to you and you get an easy look, you making that shot has nothing to do with the guard’s ability to get you the ball in certain spots. It all depends on your ability to 1) get to that spot and 2) shoot the damn ball. I think another player can make you better by inspiring better performances from you in terms of awareness and hustle. Or like how Ray Allen mentored Mike Redd and worked him out in practice and worked with him on his quick release technique. I mean, can anyone without speaking generically, explain how one player makes their teammates better?

  • robb

    Go ahead CP3, spoil the kid, spoon feed him so he can’t develop into a more complete player.

  • AD

    @Kadavour i agree…. even tho redd already had the skills lol

  • http://www.slamonline.com TADOne

    Chris Paul is the definition of a leader. Deron Williams should be taking notes.

  • http://www.slamonline.com TADOne

    And VDN should have been fired yesterday. He is holding that team back.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    VDN should have been fired the day of the Chris Paul trade. And Mike D’Antoni should be hired, these guys aren’t going to be a good defensive team no matter who they hire, might as well be as good offensively as possible. Especially with Cp running things.

  • Rainman

    Blake continues to get babied.

  • Rainman

    But at least Blake took responsibility for his own bad game

  • Rainman

    @ Kadavour: Ever heard of the ‘Steve Nash Effect’ ?

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    What do people mean when the say all “Blake does is dunk”? What kind of sh*t is that? So I guess…being a great rebounder, very good passer and ballhandler (for his position) don’t count? SMH

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Damn TAD why you taking a shot at my boy?
    I don’t totally disagree, but come on cut Deron a little slack. When Kobe berates his teammates and refs, people still say he’s a leader. Same with Jordan.

  • http://www.slamonline.com TADOne

    Haha Allen. I have to admit I’m just not that high on Deron and his leadership skills. Ever since that whole fiasco in Utah went down I just could not get myself to back him as a fan. Plus CP3 is my favorite player so I’m biased.

  • http://www.slamonline.com TADOne

    I’m not sure if I agree with D’Antoni being a good choice for the Clippers. It’s not like Chris Paul needs him to get numbers. Then again I’m not sure who out there is better? What’s Larry Brown doing these days?? And you guys may laugh but I think Isiah Thomas could be a good coach for the Clips. He was actually a pretty good coach in Indy.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    I just don’t think Larry Brown would be able to deal with Blake Griffin. That guy is basically Amar’e 2.0 on defense. Same with Nick Young, Larry Brown would strangle somebody.
    .
    Isiah wouldn’t be “bad” for them at all, but he’s so unpredictable, idk how he would coach them or what direction he would take them in.
    .
    I like D’Antoni for them, I also would like to see John Calipari get another shot, even though I doubt he’d give up the Kentucky job. I’d also be interested to see a team give David Thorpe a shot, atleast as an assistant, see what he can do for guys.

  • http://www.slamonline.com TADOne

    Isiah wasn’t unpredictable in Indy but Bird wanted to bring in his own guy when he got hired. But Isiah may want control and that would be his downfall. You are right about LB but he has gotten a lot of guys to ‘buy in’ in his career. I would see if Jeff Van Gundy would consider returning to coaching.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    oh yes, Jeff Van Gundy. you win. That’s the first guy I would go to.

  • http://stapledesign.com Spaceship Jay

    Mmmm.. It was my understanding that CP3 IS the coach of whatever team he’s on at one point or another; from the Hornets, to All-Star games, to Olympics, to the Clippers. CP3 always has everyone huddled around him while he’s giving orders at some point. Fire VDN, put in someone that’ll be excellent at strategic substitutions and time-out usage. I think Chris would take it from there. Blake will be Blake; what big man is putting up solid numbers AND playing D at the same time?

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Chris Bosh, Dirk (believe it or not), Lamarcus Aldridge (not as much lately, but on the season he is), Pau, Kevin Garnett, Josh Smith.

  • http://stapledesign.com Spaceship Jay

    I’ll give you KG and JSmith; the rest can be given 30 and 15 easily if whoever their guarding has a solid first quarter. You forgot Dwight.. Sorta.

  • emaye

    wrong coach for the clippers. not teaching them how to be a defensive team. Most of there players lack the basics of the game.They need a different coach.Most of there player have no fundamentals and they play like a team from the street at a park

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    “easily” lol yeah because it happens all the time. plus you realize most rebounds are defensive? You don’t put up 15 rebounds on a guys defense, you put up offensive rebounds on a guys defense. Which is normally around 2-4 on the high end. 5-7 in really big offensive rebounding games.

  • AD

    @Tadone how is Deron williams not a leader?

  • AD

    @spacechip jay.. Chris paul wouldnt be cris paul without Byron Scott teaching him. Monty williams is a good coach, and VDN is not bad… The clippers just dnt play d.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    VDN is horrible.

  • AD

    @nbk explain please?

  • http://stapledesign.com Spaceship Jay

    @nbk true, the rebounds are just a formality; the points and matador defense I see from a lot of those dudes isn’t. Although Pau is getting better after continuous trade threats, Bynum officially taking rank over him, and dry-snitching to the media about Kobe’s shooting habits, a solid dunk and scream at the crowd afterwards usually destroys his entire psyche for the rest of the game. Don’t mean to get on Pau like that; just using him as an example. @AD Ehh… I think coaches can craft great ways to use a player, but I think it’s up to the player and the Lord almighty to bestow the gifts upon him when it comes to being on the floor. You can’t TEACH Chris Paul yo.

  • AD

    @spaceship jay of course. Im not taking anything away from CP3 but i’m just saying. byron scott is a great teacher. CP3 even said it when trying to get Lebron to stay in clevland. But yea cp3 is probably the smartest pg in the game even tho i’ll take him second.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Explain how Vinny Del Negro is horrible? This is established, everyone has been aware of since he was in Chicago.
    .
    But here goes,
    -The Clippers (just like the Bulls before them) run a basic offense that puts players in positions on the court that don’t cater to their strengths. They utilize Blake Griffin in isolation more then Pick and Rolls. They shoot in the middle of the pack from the field despite having the best playmaker in the league (which is clear evidence of how poorly constructed their offense is, with all that talent), they play at the 3rd slowest pace in the whole league despite being one of the 5 most athletically gifted & defensively deficient teams in the league, and in spite of the fact that they play so slow they still shoot the 5th most 3′s in the league (which is more evidence at how unsuccessful & poorly constructed their offense is (if you are going to play slow then you might as well get good shots out of it, which they aren’t doing – 13th overall in 3pt %).
    .
    I think that about covers it.

  • AD

    @nbk lol thanks… I thought they run a lot of screens with BG but i guess not. IMO that team should be like the old nets . They should be running every chance they get especially with all those 3 point shooters. Imagine if Byron coached that team.

  • tbeastin

    yes..super co-sign on the whole JVG return to coaching…why hasnt this guy gotten another shot? put VDN in the booth aready! FREE JEFF VAN GUNDY!!!! not sure what he should be freed from, but free him anyways!!!

  • http://www.slamonline.com TADOne

    AD, I don’t see Deron Williams as a leader. He doesn’t seem to command the team the way a PG should. He looks to get his numbers before he looks to get his teammates involved. He sulks and yells at his teammates if they make a bad play or decision. And I don’t even want to get into the whole fiasco in Utah…

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    yeah i mean all of their sportscenter highlights and recaps show them running pick and rolls because that’s where they are most successful, but the meat of their offense is just plain bad.

  • http://www.slamonline.com house

    That game was horrible to watch, especially the last two quarters. I don’t think the blame rests solely on Blake and Cp3 though. Ole numbnuts from the Wizard’s who likes jacking 3′s on 1 vs 4 fastbreaks, i.e., no teammates there to rebound a rushed shot, didn’t help either.

  • http://www.slamonline.com TADOne

    I am pretty certain teams had inquired Van Gundy about returning to coaching but I don’t think he was ready and enjoys broadcasting. But it doesn’t hurt to ask again.

  • AD

    @tadone dwill seen utah’s dumb decisions, letting brewer,korver , wesley mathews go and voiced his opinion. There a vid on youtube showing dwill yell at gordon hayword but everyone makes mistakes… @ house mo williams does that also, if anything that would be VDN’s fault.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Deron treats his teammates poorly. It’s a fact. He does not handle losing well, which is understandable, but lashing out at your teammates is not cool. Ever.
    I was very disappointed when I realized what I saw in Utah wasn’t an aberration. He’s still a beast and possibly the best point in the League though.
    And the Clippers run way, WAY too many isos for Blake, Caron and CP3. They should be a spread the floor, uptempo team. But, i remember that people said that Chris Paul prefers to play at a slower pace, so maybe that’s some of the problem. But with Blake, Jordan and Young on the wings, they should be running down people’s throats all game.

  • Rainman

    @ Nbk: i take offence to u calling CP3 the best playmaker in the League, that title still belongs to Nash lol agree with everything else said about VDN tho

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    You may be right, it’s really a toss up. Him, Nash, LeBron. All those guys create open looks the vast majority of their possessions.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    VDN to be fired any day. Just came down the news-wire.

  • A.M.

    They should bring Larry Brown back in hands down!!!

  • Rainman

    u can throw Rondo into that list too. But to me, it isnt all that hard to figure out, Nash is leading the league in assist and is doing it on a team whose best perimiter option is who? Dudley? an old Grant hill? Frye? a broken down Michael Redd? his best inside threat is Gortat, who at his best is a 16 point scorer off of mostly Nash passes. And the team is actually playing well now.And he’s doing it in a system that has does NOT involve D’aintoni (its funny, Nash has had loads of success outside od D’aintoni’s system, its been everyone thats left Nash that have fallen off, D’aintoni and Amare included lol)No other point guard can do that imo

  • http://www.nba.com VanCityBBall

    Am I the only one who likes nate McMillan for the job?

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