The 2019-20 Los Angeles Clippers in Review

November 15th, 2020

by Alan Lu

The Los Angeles Clippers’ present-day logo.
(Photo:
Los Angeles Clippers/Sports Logo History)

The Los Angeles Clippers swung a blockbuster trade in the offseason to get both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, and excitement was in the air in Los Angeles, because both the Lakers and Clippers seemed to have built their teams to both be title contenders in the same season.  People were anticipated the two L.A. teams to meet in the playoffs in what would have been hyped and dubbed “The Battle For Los Angeles” series that incidentally would have taken place in Orlando, and “The Battle for Los Angeles” coincidentally was the title of Rage Against the Machine’s third studio album, which by the way, is an excellent album that has aged quite well.

Anyways, the 2020 Clippers got off to a very good start in the regular season, and while some people complained about their starters resting too much, the Clippers looked very much like a powerhouse team when they had all of their players out there.  They looked poised to contend for a title.  Then, they made a controversial trade with the Knicks to part ways with athletic, 3 and D forward Maurice Harkless to acquire Marcus Morris, a 19-point scorer that was on the 2019 Celtics’ team that had chemistry problems in a bid to get more talent onto their roster.  However, the Clippers lost to the Lakers just before the season was suspended.  They did win 5 of their 8 games in the Orlando bubble in the regular season. 

However, they dropped a couple of games before pulling out a first-round series win over the Dallas Mavericks, but some concerns were there about the Clippers’ motor and light switch mentality.  After getting off to a 3-1 series lead in the second round against the Denver Nuggets, the 2020 Clippers lost three straight games to lose the series to Denver in 7 games, which stunned NBA fans everywhere.  The Clippers’ season was over, and shortly after that, head coach Doc Rivers was fired, to be hired by the Philadelphia 76ers days later.  The Clippers have since hired former 2016 Cavaliers’ head coach and NBA champion, Tyronn Lue to be their head coach for the 2020-21 season.

Los Angeles Clippers’ superstar forward, Kawhi Leoanrd brought Clippers’ fans plenty of hope, as this 2020 Clippers team brought hope in spades. However, Leonard was not his usual self in the postseason, and the Clippers collapsed by blowing a 3-1 lead and lost in 7 games to the Denver Nuggets in the 2nd Round of the 2020 NBA playoffs.
(Photo:
Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images, via The Los Angeles Times)

F Kawhi Leonard – B+

2020 (LAC): 57 GP, 27.1 PPG, 7.1 RPG, 4.9 APG, 1.8 SPG, 47 FG%, 38 3PT%, 89 FT%, 32.4 MPG, 26.9 PER, 8.7 WS

Kawhi Leonard had a solid season for the Clippers.  He did miss 15 games due to load management and some minor injuries, but Leonard generally excelled as an all-around player for his team.  However, he struggled to be his team’s number one scorer at times in the playoffs, as he suddenly had trouble making outside shots, and he didn’t make shots consistently in his team’s Game 7 loss to the Nuggets.  While Leonard is a superstar, it seems that he still needs more help around him, and he didn’t provide any vocal leadership when there was turmoil amid his team in their last three games of the playoffs.  Still, Leonard is a tremendously talented player, and he and George will get the Clippers to win a lot of games in 2021.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Franchise player, superstar/starting small forward of the Los Angeles Clippers
Projected 2021 Rating: 4 stars

Paul George played very well during the regular season, but he had a terrible postseason that was capped off by his 4 for 16 shooting in which he scored just 10 points in his team’s Game 7 loss to the Denver Nuggets in the second round.
(Photo:
Kim Klement/USA Today Sports, via Reuters)

G-F Paul George – C+

2020 (LAC): 48 GP, 21.5 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 3.9 APG, 44 FG%, 41 3PT%, 88 FT%, 29.6 MPG, 21.1 PER, 4.8 WS

Paul George played very well in the regular season, and he generally excelled as an all-around player for the Clippers during that time span.  He had shoulder surgery early in the year, and also missed some time due to load management.  However,  he struggled to shoot, score, or defend well for the Clippers, and he didn’t seem at all equipped to handle the rigors of postseason play.  George shot an abysmal 4 of 16 from the field to score just 10 points in his team’s Game 7 loss to the Denver Nuggets, and it’s clear that the Clippers will need more help around Leonard and George.  Still, George is a very talented player, and he could contend to make the All-Star team in 2021.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Starting swingman of the Los Angeles Clippers
Projected 2021 Rating: 3.5 stars

Los Angeles Clippers’ starting point guard, Patrick Beverley’s NBA season this year starting off promising, and he put together some electrifying defensive performances in the regular season. But in the postseason, his play languished as his team ended up losing in the 2nd round of the 2020 NBA playoffs.
(Photo:
Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images, via The New York Times)

G Patrick Beverley – C+

2020 (LAC): 51 GP, 7.9 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 3.6 APG, 43 FG%, 39 3PT%, 66 FT%, 26.3 MPG, 12.5 PER, 3.6 WS

Patrick Beverley had a fairly solid season with the Clippers.  He is a tremendous defender that can lock down his man, and he showed off solid all-around skills when he was on the court.  He’s not really a scorer and he’s an agitator that can overdo it, and in the playoffs, it seemed that he couldn’t justify his antics from the bench with effective play.  The Clippers ended up losing in 7 games to the Nuggets, and there are sudden concerns if his team may need a more dynamic playmaker at the point.  Still, Beverley’s defensive skills and ability to guard opponents will enable him to get many minutes on his team for the upcoming season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2.5 stars

Los Angeles Clippers’ forward, Marcus Morris inadvertently may have sparked the turning point of the series, as his Game 5 confrontation with Denver Nuggets’ forward, Paul Millsap late in the second quarter while the Clippers were up 16 may have helped the tide swing into Denver’s favor, as the Denver Nuggets later won Game 5, and the 2nd Round series in 7 games against the Clippers.
(Photo:
Mark J. Terrill/AP Photo)

F Marcus Morris – C+ (B+ with the New York Knicks, C- with the Los Angeles Clippers)

2020 (TOT): 62 GP, 16.7 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 44 FG%, 41 3PT%, 82 FT%, 31.2 MPG, 14.3 PER, 3.6 WS
2020 (NYK): 43 GP, 19.6 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 44 FG%, 44 3PT%, 82 FT%, 32.3 MPG, 16.5 PER, 2.9 WS
2020 (LAC): 19 GP, 10.1 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 43 FG%, 31 3PT%, 82 FT%, 28.9 MPG, 8.9 PER, 0.6 WS

In the 2019 offseason, Marcus Morris was initially believed to be signing with the Spurs when he suddenly reversed course to join the New York Knicks.  After averaged over 19 points per game with them, he was traded during the middle of the season to the Clippers, and Morris was tasked to provide the Clippers another scoring option to their team. 

However, Morris didn’t exactly play too well for the Clippers during the regular season.  He struggled to make shots efficiently nor rebound well, but he did play adequate defense for them then.  In the playoffs, Morris put up good numbers individually, but had a penchant for irritating his opponents unnecessarily. 

In game 5 of the 2nd Round while his team was up 16 points, he decided to get into a tiff with Paul Millsap of the Denver Nuggets, and it led to Millsap dominating the third quarter, and the Nuggets came back all the way to win that game, and later that series.  The Clippers had a major collapse in the playoffs, and one has to wonder if Morris has to shoulder some of the blame for their surprising series loss to the Nuggets.  Regardless, Marcus Morris will be a free agent, but he will likely earn a lot of playing time somewhere in the NBA for the upcoming season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2.5 stars

Side note: Will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2019-20 season.

C Ivica Zubac – B-

2020 (LAC): 72 GP, 8.3 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 61 FG%, 18.4 MPG, 21.7 PER, 6.6 WS

Zubac had a fairly solid season for the Clippers.  He excelled as an inside scorer, rebounder, and interior defender throughout the regular season, and he also showed off some passing skills.  However, he didn’t defend well in the playoffs though, as his lack of mobility was exposed, and he really struggled to guard Jokic in the second round.  Still, he had a fairly good season in 2020, and he will likely get plenty of minutes on the Clippers’ team for the upcoming season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2.5 stars

Los Angeles Clippers’ forward, Montrezl Harrell won the 2020 NBA Sixth Man of the Year award due to his strong play off the bench during the regular season. However, he didn’t play nearly as well in the playoffs, as he struggled considerably on the defensive end in the 2020 postseason.
(Photo:
Ashley Landis/Associated Press, via Bleacher Report)

F-C Montrezl Harrell – B-

2020 (LAC): 63 GP, 18.6 PPG, 7.1 RPG, 58 FG%, 27.8 MPG, 23.2 PER, 7 WS

Harrell had a solid season for the Clippers in 2020.  He excelled as an inside scorer and rebounder for them off the bench, and he put up strong numbers for them throughout the regular season.  In fact, Harrell was named the 2019-20 NBA Sixth Man of the Year due to his strong play off the bench.

However, he struggled to defend in the playoffs, as his lack of size made it tough for him to guard Jokic.  Still, he will likely get a big payday in the offseason, and he will likely earn plenty of minutes on either the Clippers or on a new team for the upcoming season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Starter/solid bench player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2.5 stars

Side note: Will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2019-20 season.

Los Angeles Clippers’ guard and three-time NBA Sixth Man of the Year, Lou Williams played well in the regular season, but he had to spend time in quarantine after photos surfaced with him at a strip club with rapper, Jack Harlow.
(Photo:
Kelvin Kuo/USA Today Sports, via SportsNaut)

G Lou Williams – C+

2020 (LAC): 65 GP, 18.2 PPG, 5.6 APG, 3.1 RPG, 42 FG%, 35 3PT%, 86 FT%, 28.7 MPG, 17.3 PER, 4.1 WS

Lou Williams is a very skilled, scoring guard that excelled in a bench role for the Clippers this past season.  He excelled as an offensive player throughout the regular season, but Williams struggled to make shots or defend consistently in the playoffs.  Still, he is expected to provide a solid scoring punch for his team in 2021.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2.5 stars

G Landry Shamet – C+

2020 (LAC): 53 GP, 9.3 PPG, 40 FG%, 38 3PT%, 86 FT%, 27.4 MPG, 8.5 PER, 2.6 WS

Landry Shamet is a sharpshooting combo guard that excels at knocking down three-point shots to provide floor spacing for his team.  He also is a decent defender that can capably guard opponents in games.  He will need to improve his scoring and distribution skills, but his ability to shoot the basketball will allow him to get plenty of minutes on the Clippers for the upcoming season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2 stars (2.5 stars potential)

F-C JaMychal Green – B

2020 (LAC): 63 GP, 6.8 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 43 FG%, 39 3PT%, 75 FT%, 20.7 MPG, 11.1 PER, 3.1 WS

Green also had a solid season with the Clippers this past season.  He excelled as a shooter, rebounder, and defender when he was on the floor.  He also was efficient in making plays for them in the playoffs.  On the downside, he’s not really an elite scorer, and he didn’t play much in crunch time.  In addition, neither he nor anyone else on his team could seem to get their shots to fall in their Game 7 loss to the Nuggets.  Green will likely be a regular in either the Clippers’ rotation or for another team in the upcoming season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2 stars

Side note: Has a player option at the end of the 2019-20 season.

F Patrick Patterson – C+

2020 (LAC): 59 GP, 4.9 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 41 FG%, 39 3PT%, 81 FT%, 13.2 MPG, 11.5 PER, 1.9 WS

Patterson excelled as an outside shooter for the Clippers this season, but he will need to improve his rebounding and defense.  He also barely played in the playoffs, and he didn’t get much run in the 2020 postseason.  Most likely, he will end up on an NBA team where he will fight for rotation minutes next season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Fringe rotation player, backend roster player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2 stars

Side note: Will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2019-20 season.

G Reggie Jackson – C (D+ with Detroit, B- with the LA Clippers)

2020 (TOT): 31 GP, 11.9 PPG, 4.1 APG, 3.0 RPG, 41 FG%, 39 3PT%, 83 FT%, 24 MPG, 13.7 PER, 1.1 WS
2020 (DET): 14 GP, 14.9 PPG, 5.1 APG, 2.9 RPG, 38 FG%, 38 3PT%, 79 FT%, 27.2 MPG, 14.7 PER, 0.4 WS
2020 (LAC): 17 GP, 9.5 PPG, 3.2 APG, 3.0 RPG, 45 FG%, 41 3PT%, 90 FT%, 21.3 MPG, 12.6 PER, 0.8 WS

Reggie Jackson is an athletic, scoring combo guard that had a roller-coaster type of year this season.  He struggled to consistently produce for Detroit and was waived, but Jackson shot the ball well for the Clippers, as he provided them a solid scoring punch off the bench.  On the downside, he struggled to pass or defend well in the playoffs.  Still, he is a talented player that will likely sign with an NBA team and get plenty of playing time in 2021.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation player
Projected 2021 Rating: 2 stars

Side note: Will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2019-20 season.

G-F Terance Mann – B

2020 (LAC): 41 GP, 2.4 PPG, 1.3 APG, 1.3 RPG, 47 FG%, 35 3PT%, 67 FT%, 8.8 MPG, 10.6 PER, 0.8 WS

Terance Mann is a skilled, all-around swingman that showed promise in his team’s last regular season game in the Orlando bubble in 2020.  He scored 25 points and had 14 rebounds, 9 assists, and 2 steals in a win over the Thunder, and he was able to nearly get a triple-double in that game. 

Mann is a point forward that has solid defensive skills.  If he can consistently make shots and score on offense, he could be due for a breakout season in 2021, and he is definitely talented enough to be a  regular rotation player for the Clippers next season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Rotation-caliber player
Projected 2021 Rating: 1.5 stars (2.5 stars potential)

F-C Mfiondu Kabengele – C

2020 (LAC): 12 GP, 3.5 PPG, 44 FG%, 45 3PT%, 100 FT%, 5.3 MPG, 18.2 PER, 0.2 WS

He is an athletic, skilled big man that can space the floor to help his team on offense.  Kabengele excelled at knocking down threes and free throws, but he will need to improve his scoring, rebounding, and interior defense.  Still, he is a talented player that will compete for a rotation spot on the Clippers next season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Fringe rotation player, backend roster player
Projected 2021 Rating: 1.5 stars (2 star potential)

F-C Johnathan Motley (Two-Way) – B

2020 (LAC): 13 GP, 2.2 PPG, 73 FG%, 3.2 MPG, 28.5 PER, 0.3 WS

Motley has been on a two-way contract for his third straight season in the NBA.  He didn’t play much this year, but he excelled as a scorer, facilitator, and defender when he was on the floor.  He played very well in limited minutes, but he will need to find a way to get extended playing time at this level.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Fringe rotation player, backend roster player
Projected 2021 Rating: 1.5 stars (2 star potential)

F Amir Coffey (Two-Way) – C

2020 (LAC): 18 GP, 3.2 PPG, 43 FG%, 32 3PT%, 55 FT%, 8.8 MPG, 8.5 PER, 0.1 WS

He is an athletic combo forward that was on a two-way contract with the Clippers this past season.  He showed off some facilitation and defensive skills, but he struggled to make shots consistently or to get many rebounds in games.  Still, he may be a talented enough player to get more playing time either with the Clippers or another team next season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Fringe rotation player, backend roster player
Projected 2021 Rating: 1.5 stars (2 star potential)

G Rodney McGruder – C-

2020 (LAC): 56 GP, 3.3 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 40 FG%, 27 3PT%, 56 FT%, 15.6 MPG, 6.7 PER, 1.0 WS

McGruder got plenty of minutes with the Clippers in the regular season.  He played solid defense and was active on the boards, but he struggled to shoot or get assists for his team, and he did not play much in the postseason.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Fringe rotation player, backend roster player
Projected 2021 Rating: 1.5 stars

C Joakim Noah – C+

2020 (LAC): 5 GP, 2.8 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 1.4 APG, 50 FG%, 10 MPG, 11.1 PER, 0.1 WS

Noah was signed late in the season, and he ended up playing a handful of games in the Orlando bubble.  He excelled as a rebounder, facilitator, and interior defender when he was on the floor.  He didn’t take many shots on offense nor score much, but he excelled at drawing free throws to get to the foul line.  He did not play much in the playoffs, though.  If he returns for another year, he will compete for a spot in an NBA rotation for the upcoming season.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Fringe rotation player, backend roster player
Projected 2021 Rating: 1.5 stars

Side note: Will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2019-20 season.

The Los Angeles Clippers’ new head coach, Tyronn Lue will hope to bring good fortunes to the Clippers for the upcoming 2020-21 NBA season. Ty Lue was the head coach of the 2016 Cleveland Cavaliers’ team that featured LeBron James, as they won the NBA championship together in 2016.
(Photo:
Elise Amendola/AP Photo, via The Undefeated)

Head Coach:
Tyronn Lue, 2020 season grade: Incomplete
2020 (LAC): 0-0 as the head coach, was an assistant coach with the Clippers
Coaching Career: 128-83, 41-20 in the playoffs, 1 NBA title with the 2016 Cavaliers

Tyronn Lue was the head coach of the 2016 Cleveland Cavaliers that won the NBA championship, and he arguably did some of the best coaching in modern postseason history.  After having made the NBA Finals and lost in 2017 and 2018, the Cavs lost LeBron James to the Lakers, and presumably, any chance to win the title just went out the window when that happened.  In the 2018-19 season, his team lost six straight games, and he was fired after that, although many people had anticipated the Cavaliers to either miss the playoffs or to not be very competitive there in 2019 after having lost both LeBron via free agency, and Kyrie via trade a year earlier.

After the 2020 Clippers were upset by the Nuggets early in the postseason, it seemed clear that they needed a new voice, and that could be in the form of Ty Lue.  He is a player’s coach that showed that he was capable of making adjustments in the middle of the series as he had done in 2016, which is something that Doc Rivers had trouble doing this past season.  With the new hire of Lue, there is hope that this could provide them the jolt that they may sorely need.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Head coach of the Los Angeles Clippers
Projected 2021 Rating: 3 stars

Former Los Angeles Clippers’ head coach, Doc Rivers bore the brunt of the blame after his team blew a 3-1 lead and lost their second round series to the Denver Nuggets in 7 games, and shortly afterwards, he was fired by the Clippers. Days later, he was hired to be the Philadelphia 76ers’ head coach, as the 76ers decided to give him a fresh start and a change of scenery.
(Photo:
Matt Slocum/Associated Press, via Bleacher Report)

Former Head Coach:
Doc Rivers – 2020 season grade: C
2020 (LAC): 49-23, 7-6 in the playoffs

Head Coaching Career: 943-681, 91-89 in his playoff career, 1 NBA title with the 2008 Boston Celtics

For most of the regular season, Doc Rivers coached well for the Clippers, and he kept them in title contention and had his team win a lot of games in the regular season.  He also kept his starters well rested, and they seemed poised to make a deep playoff run.

However, in the playoffs, there just wasn’t any chemistry from their team, and they had trouble generating consistent offense.  Rivers had trouble identifying adjustments to make in the middle of the Nuggets’ series in the second round, and he ended up shouldering most of the blame when their team blew a 3-1 series lead to lose the series in 7 games.

Projected 2021 Role/Expectations: Head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers
Projected 2021 Rating: 2.5 stars

The turning point of the 2019-20 Los Angeles Clippers’ season was likely their game 5 loss to the Denver Nuggets in the 2nd round of the 2020 NBA playoffs. The Clippers were up 3-1 in the series prior to this game, but they then blew a 16-point lead, as they were up 16 at the time when the Marcus Morris-Paul Millsap altercation took place. Denver Nuggets’ forward, Paul Millsap would go on a tear in the third quarter, the Nuggets rallied back to win game 5 and later the series. Video of the Clippers-Nuggets’ game 5 review and analysis from No Dunks Inc. begins around the 29:18 mark. (Also worth noting, No Dunks Inc’s Leigh Ellis was not a happy camper when the Clippers blew a 16-point lead to lose Game 5.)
(Source: YouTube/NoDunks Inc)

The 2020 Los Angeles Clippers’ season grade: C+

For arguably the first time in their history in Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Clippers were viewed as legitimate title contenders to start the season.  Their acquisitions in getting Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, and Doc Rivers to come to their team had many people excited, and on paper, they definitely looked the part of a heavyweight.

They started out strong in the regular season, and they were able to win tough games early when they played their full lineup.  However, it seemed as if they started to lose some momentum late in the regular season, and after having parted ways with Maurice Harkless to the New York Knicks in a trade to acquire Marcus Morris, the Clippers seemed to lose games as chemistry issues seemed to be bubbling on the surface.

In the playoffs, they dropped a couple of games to the Dallas Mavericks, but they still won their first-round series, so it didn’t seem like much of a cause for alarm.  In the second round, the Los Angeles Clippers got off to a 3-1 series lead but lost a pivotal Game 5 against the Denver Nuggets, in which they had led by 16 late in the second quarter.  Their inability to close games and penchant for blowing big leads only exacerbated and magnified their issues in the playoffs, and the Clippers were worn down by Game 7, and they ended up getting blown out in a Game 7 loss to the Nuggets.  Clipper nation and the NBA basketball world was stunned, and the Clippers were ousted with a relative quick playoff exit after having come in penciled as title contenders.  With their 2020 title hopes having crashed down in shambles, they now have a tall task in trying to figure out the best way to contend and to try to win the title in 2021.

The Los Angeles Clippers’ Projected 2020-21 NBA Rotation

Projected Starters:
C Ibica Zubac
F Marcus Morris* (UFA)
F Kawhi Leonard
G Paul George
G Patrick Beverley

Key Reserves:
G Lou Williams
F-C Montrezl Harrell* (UFA)
G Landry Shamet
F JaMychal Green

Others competing for a spot in the rotation next season:
G Reggie Jackson* (UFA)
F Patrick Patterson* (UFA)
G-F Terance Mann
C Mfiondu Kabengele
G Rodney McGruder

Other players that are currently projected to be on their next season’s roster:
The 57th Overall Pick of the 2020 NBA Draft
F-C Johnathan Motley (Two-Way)
F Amir Coffey (Two-Way)

Players that will be Restricted Free Agents:
None

Players that will be Unrestricted Free Agents:
Montrezl Harrell
Marcus Morris
Reggie Jackson
Patrick Patterson
Joakim Noah

Projected Players Cut from Next Season’s Roster:
None

2020 NBA Draft Picks:
#57

Projected Offseason Plan for the Los Angeles Clippers:

The Clippers really will have to ponder what they should do in the offseason.  They will have to decide if they believe in their current roster to bring them a title in 2021, or if they will need to retool significant parts of their roster.

The fact that the Clippers had an epic collapse in the 2020 NBA playoffs does not make things any easier on them.  A lot of blame and finger pointing went around, with Doc Rivers, Kawhi Leonard, and Paul George bearing the brunt of it.  Doc Rivers was replaced as the head coach with Tyronn Lue, so that is one decision that is already made by the Clippers’ management team.

Currently, they are building their team around Kawhi Leonard, but there are concerns if they can generate consistent scoring or the leadership needed to make them legitimate title contenders for the upcoming season.  Kawhi never really has been a vocal leader, and he’s always been a lead-by-example, but he couldn’t seem to rein in the role players when things were taking a turn for the worse for them in their second round series against the Nuggets.

The Clippers will have to decide if they want to bring back Marcus Morris and Montrezl Harrell.  As for the draft, they have a late second round pick, and in free agency they are capped out, so they are not likely to land a new impact player there.  Most likely, they will probably keep Paul George, Pat Beverley, and Lou Williams, but there’s no doubt if they do decide to trade them, there would be a lot of takers that would want them, and the Clippers could reap plenty of assets back in return.

In all likelihood though, they are going to run it back by trying to re-sign Morris and Harrell.   But they will have to sort out their chemistry and leadership issues, because if they can’t, they may wind up with an early playoff exit in 2021 just like what happened to them this year.  

Expected Regular-Season Record in 2021*: 44-28, 3rd seed in the Western Conference

The 2021 Los Angeles Clippers would be poised to face off against the 6th seeded Portland Trail Blazers in the first round of the 2021 NBA playoffs.

Expected 2021 Season Outcome:  They will likely earn a top 4 playoff seed out in the West, but due to the strength of the toughest teams in the West combined with the current chemistry issues, the Clippers could be likely headed for an exit somewhere around the second round part of the 2021 NBA playoffs.

(* – The asterisk denotes that the expected regular season win total is adjusted for the 72-game schedule that the NBA will play for the 2020-21 season.  The initial projection for the Clippers was for them to get 50 wins in an 82-game season.  Also, the projected record does not take into account for the NBA draft or free agency, as those events have not happened yet.)

In case if you need the rubric for my player rating system of projecting NBA players for the 2020-21 season, here is the link. In addition, Basketball-Reference, RealGM, and Spotrac were vital information sites that I used to look at player and team statistics, as well as contract information.

Side note: Also, the letter grades attached to the player name was my grade for their 2019-20 season, as it is my judgment of their performance and whether or not they met or exceeded my expectations, and didn’t have much bearing on my projection of how they will perform for the 2020-21 NBA season.

Thank you for reading my grades and review of the 2019-20 Los Angeles Clippers. There are two key important dates to keep track of. The 2020 NBA Draft is on November 18th, and free agency will begin on November 20th. Thanks for reading.

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