Are the Los Angeles Clippers Over Their Recent Struggles?

It’s safe to say that the Los Angeles Clippers haven’t had the best of runs recently. On the one hand, the club is looking forward to moving into its area, the Intuit Arena in 2024. On the other hand, the club can’t get away from the fact that its performance hasn’t been the best. In this article, we’ll run through some of the setbacks and disappointments the Clippers have faced and look at whether they can turn their fortunes around.

The Clippers’ Performance Recently

When the 2023-24 NBA season started on 23 October, the Los Angeles Clippers were generally expected to do well. They had plenty of top players in top form, with Russell Westbrook, Kawhi Leonard, and Paul George, in particular, predicted to do great things. However, they’ve currently played 18 games (as of the time of writing) and have only managed to win 8 of them.

A recent game that the Clippers failed to win took place on 27 November. It was against the Denver Nuggets, who the Clippers haven’t beaten for seven consecutive games since 11 January 2022. The Nuggets’ star player, center Nikola Jokic, was ruled out of the November game because of ongoing lower back pain. With the opponent’s top player no longer taking part, the Clippers were widely expected to take advantage of this and earn themselves a win. However, they didn’t. The final score for the game was 104-113, with the Nuggets winning. This is just one example of several matchups that the Clippers haven’t won. Even though the club should have decent chances of winning, it hasn’t performed well. So what’s been going on?

The Trade Announcement and Player Swap

At the end of October, a trade was announced. The Philadelphia 76ers agreed to send PJ Tucker, Filip Petrusev, and James Harden to the Clippers in exchange for KJ Martin, Nicolas Batum, Robert Covington, and Marcus Morris. This trade has been on the table since July. When it was complete, the Clippers had what many believed to be a top All-Star quarter of James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Kawhi Leonard, and Paul George.

Challenges and Unforeseen Consequences

Despite predictions that the trade would be a great move for the club, things haven’t turned out how the club would have wanted them to. The club managed to lose the first five games it played since welcoming Harden and the others. Various reasons for this shocking losing streak have been put forward, including:

  • Failing to protect the ball properly: One thing that the top four Clippers players have in common is that they aren’t the best at preventing turnovers from taking place.
  • Not moving the ball between players enough: The Clippers’ top players also tend to keep the ball to themselves, not passing it to their teammates enough.
  • Not rebounding the ball enough: The Clippers aren’t good at carrying out rebounds since a lot of the time when they miss a goal, the ball ends up with the opponent.
Fan Discontent and Player Integration Challenges

Many Clippers fans didn’t want the trade for Harden to go ahead because they thought he wouldn’t be the right fit for the club. They believed that despite Harden ticking lots of boxes, he wouldn’t be able to solve all the club’s issues. Plus, there’s the fact that he’s an established player with a lengthy career history. Someone who’s been playing basketball for 14 years will have developed their play style and skills and won’t necessarily adapt to a new club so easily.

The string of losses since welcoming Harden into the club is proof of this. It was expected that Harden would help secure more wins for the Clippers, but the opposite has happened. This is the last thing a club wants when it carries out a trade for multiple players. After all, the whole point of a trade is to cover weaknesses in the line-up and make the team stronger overall.

Betting on the Clippers

Many people in the US and beyond enjoy placing bets on sporting events such as basketball (where betting is legal, of course). When the Harden trade was announced, some backed him and the Clippers, whereas others didn’t, thinking he wouldn’t do well with the club.

If you’re into gambling and don’t fancy betting on the Clippers, consider other types of gambling instead. You could, for example, play some casino games at a real money online casino. They’re fun, and some have great special features that take the gameplay to the next level. There are even some sports-themed slot games. You’ll find quite a few themed to basketball at some of the top online casinos.

Can the Clippers Turn Things Around?

Whether the Clippers will manage to turn things around for the rest of 2023 and as 2024 gets underway remains to be seen. One thing we do know is that if the club’s going to succeed, it’s got to adapt to new members much more quickly than it has done recently. It might be facing a rough time now, but there’s every chance things may improve for the club.

What’s clear is that the Clippers took a risk in signing Harden and other players and that the risk didn’t pay off. Hopefully, the losses will encourage the club to pull together, come up with new strategies, and work in a cohesive way to claim some wins.

The club certainly has the potential to turn things around – it’s definitely got enough talented players on its roster. It won’t come close to winning the 2023-24 NBA season. But the club could have a great 2024 and become one of the top teams in the 2024-25 season. We’ll just have to hope it can move on from its current situation and make the possible improvements.