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Technically, Los Angeles Clippers kept its composure

August 26, 2020

first_imgThat’s an accomplishment for a team whose center, DeAndre Jordan, is tied for the second most technicals in the league with nine, and whose coach has been ejected from three games this season. Austin Rivers has been called for four techs, while Chris Paul and Marreese Speights each have a pair.Jordan was happy to pin the cool-headedness on Austin Rivers, who did not attend the game due to flu-like symptoms. “It’s because Austin wasn’t here,” he quipped.Instead, it was the Heat who will find themselves paying fines to start the week.The Heat racked up three technical fouls, including two by coach Erik Spoelstra and guard Goran Dragic 16 seconds apart in the third quarter. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error One play in particular seemed ripe for Clippers players to lash out. James Johnson missed a 3-pointer from the corner, and as J.J. Redick attempted to box out, he was elbowed in the back of the head by Heat guard Dion Waiters.Waiters was called for a flagrant foul 2 and ejected.“I’m not sure if it was intentional or not,” Redick said. “He said it wasn’t intentional. That’s what happened. I’m not sure why.”It’s a rich history, that of the Clippers and technical fouls.Before Sunday, Jordan had accrued two in his last three games. Speights was called for one on Jan. 31 and both Riverses were ejected in the game before that.Doc Rivers has spoken passionately in recent days about the Clippers need to cut down on technical fouls, and vowed to start with himself and donate any fines incurred to charity.After Jordan was called for a technical foul in Sacramento, his second in three games, Doc Rivers quipped, “DJ is going to give his technical money to my charity.”Buckets and Bass-ketsWith Austin Rivers sidelined, Doc Rivers figured the onus for scoring outside of the remaining two-thirds of the Clippers big three would fall on Jamal Crawford.“When Jamal and Austin are out there together,” Doc Rivers said, “it’s always one of them, they figure it out. But without him, then it had to be Jamal.”It wasn’t.The three-time Sixth Man of the Year was ice cold from the field, missing 11 of his 12 attempts.Where did the Clippers turn for points?Marreese Buckets and Brandon Bass, naturally.Speights scored a season-high 19 points off the bench while Bass added 12 points, his second highest scoring total of the season.“We struggled finding points tonight,” Doc Rivers said. “So that was big for us.”Paul objected to the term “struggling” for Crawford, however.“It’s not just about scoring points and stuff like that,” Paul said. “That’s what you do when you’re trying to win games, you give yourself up to the game.” Decisions, decisionsThe Clippers are inching toward a crossroads with rookie forward Brice Johnson, who has been out since the preseason with a herniated disc in his back.“It’s a tough year for him,” Doc Rivers said. “I don’t know if he’s that close, to be honest.”Doc Rivers said that “in the next three or four weeks” the team will have to decide whether to keep Johnson with the team and use practices to get him up to speed or send him to a Development League team elsewhere.“Because,” Doc Rivers said, “right now I don’t see him getting on the floor anytime soon.”This is a situation where the Clippers could really benefit from having their own D-League affiliate. All 22 D-League teams are either owned by an NBA team or operate as a team’s direct affiliate. If one of the eight NBA teams without such an arrangement, like the Clippers, sends a player to the D-League, they have no control over how much or how often their player is used.center_img The thought occurred to him as he got up from his post-game news conference.“We didn’t get any techs today, did we?” DeAndre Jordan asked.No, for once the Clippers weren’t the ones losing their composure.An elbow caught J.J. Redick in the head and Goran Dragic flew to the ground after getting poked in the eye. As emotions flared, in the early days of Doc Rivers plea for his team to cut down on their technical fouls, the Clippers managed to stay above it in a 98-86 win over the Heat.last_img

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