Clippers coach Doc Rivers hopeful silence is golden

first_imgIt will take perseverance, Paul said.“I think it’s very important to have patience,” he said. “We’re lucky enough to have an amazing coaching staff and amazing leader in Doc who’s been through just about everything you can go through, so I think we’ll be fine.” Ouch! That hurtsFollowing Wednesday’s debacle, Rivers said his team would get swept in four games by the Warriors if the teams played right now in the playoffs. Rivers said it “would be a destruction.”Paul responded to that Friday.“We’re just as disappointed,” he said. “We actually play. It was tough. You hear Coach say stuff like that and it should hit home. He’s probably right. Luckily, it’s not the playoffs yet, so we’ll never know.”Scouting the Trail BlazersPortland has defeated Oklahoma City, Cleveland and Dallas and lost to Sacramento and Golden State. The Trail Blazers have the third-best points differential in the league at plus-8.6. They are scoring 99.8 points per game and allowing 91.2. (The Clippers are tied for 18th with a negative-1.4 differential).The Trail Blazers are led by LaMarcus Aldridge, a 6-foot-11 power forward. He’s averaging a team-high 22.2 points as well as 6.2 rebounds. Shooting guard Wesley Matthews and point guard Damian Lillard are averaging 17.8 and 17.2 points, respectively, and Lillard is doling out 5.0 assists per game. Interestingly, small forward Nicolas Batum is leading the team in assists at 5.8 per game. Center Robin Lopez leads the team in rebounding with an 8.0 average.The Trail Blazers average 47.4 rebounds, the Clippers a league-worst 33.8. When the Clippers were routed 121-104 Wednesday night at Golden State, the Warriors played with incredible passion. The Clippers were passive. Effort is what a team needs night in and night out to compete and win in the NBA. The Clippers, who trailed by as many as 29 points Wednesday, haven’t had that.Coach Doc Rivers knows it. He said as much Friday morning at practice.“There’s a reason why we’re not playing as hard as we should,” said Rivers, whose 3-2 team takes on Portland (3-2) at 12:30 p.m. Saturday at Staples Center (on Prime Ticket). “I don’t know the reason. As a coach, that’s trouble. I want to find the reason. Sometimes a coach never finds out, the players find out. You hope that’s the case. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img “When we watch the film, it’s going to be a silent film. I know it’s not, but I’m going to try to be a silent film. I don’t think I have to say a word today. If they can’t draw their own conclusions by the effort, then we do have a problem.”Jamal Crawford talks pressureThe Clippers were picked by many experts to at least get to the Western Conference Finals this season. Sixth-man Jamal Crawford agreed this could be a factor in the team’s early troubles.“It may be in the back of our heads,” he said. “Obviously, a lot of people picked us to finish near the top or go to the Finals or Western (Conference) Finals. For good reason. We’re a good team.“We won almost 60 games (57) with me missing a month and Chris (Paul) missing a month and a half and J.J. (Redick) missing half the season. People could argue we’re better. I get it. For us, we need to go play.”last_img

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