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Next Steps

At the risk of spoiling fun while the roller coaster is riding high after the glorious victory over the hated Spurs - let's look forward.

As nice as that win was - and it was GLORIOUS - we are going to need to see more of the same for it to matter. I thought the progress had been steady and I have no reason to think it won't continue. But it has to continue.

  • If you think about the mid-season pre-season rebuild project plan (and I love me some good project plan) then I would envision this:

    1. Figure out the new offense with more bodies in the lane and different spacing. I would say this is about 85% done. Turnovers are headed down. FG% is stable. Scoring is good. Balance is good. Using Shaq well early in the post. I look for his offensive game to continue to improve as he gets more fit. Team 3P average is down a bit but should be fine. And Amare is awesome. Steve seems to be getting better from whatever was ailing him as well and he's still MVP clutch.

    2. Re-tool defense with new big body in the lane and lack of Marion to cover for others and be there put an "X" on the other team's stud. I would say this is about 50% there. Progress has been made for sure, but there's a lot left to do to get this team on the same page on defense so they don't have to play 110% for 48 minutes every game to stop someone. That's not sustainable. The system has to accomplish about half the result and effort and talent the other half. Right now I think its still about 80% effort and talent and 20% system. Especially if they aren't going to play more guys.

    3. Rotations and bench play. Right before the trade this was Coach's focus. He was talking about getting the bench better and demanding more. This was a great mid-season fine tuning improvement project. Now, its at the bottom of the priority list and is about 10% complete. Maybe even a "Not Started Yet". I hope there's time to address this before playoff's but for now I don't see how Coach can deepen his bench when he's still trying to get his top 7 guys on the same page.
  • Next two weeks the schedule is a bit easier then its been. Over the next 6 games we need to win at least 4. 5 is doable. All 6 would be awesome and completely possible. But if we drop an "easy" one and/or play without effort and purpose then I might be right back to being Clipper Fan. Early in the season I had no issues with losing a game like this from time to time. I didn't panic after the Nuggets or Jazz loses. But there's a limit to how far down this roller coaster can go before I start screaming. The team's PR and media machine are all over the fans for panicing but the team has to do its part and not play like crap at this point in the season. Loses are ok during the re-build. Lack of effort is inexcusable from here on in. This is an accountability moment.

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