Apparently Donald Sterling has been overheard heckling his Clippers players, Baron Davis in particular. What does this mean for a team that is currently rocking a 5-20 record, good for last place in the league? (on the morning of 12/14)
Where do they go from here?
No one, outside of the Clippers organization, expects anything from LA. San Antonio isn’t circling their Staples Center visit on the calendar or looking at that date as a litmus test… while they are but mostly because of the other Staples Center team.
If the Clippers finished the season 5-77 the biggest story would be the 72-73 Sixers losing their only record. No one would be particularly surprised.
With no expectations and no support from management the Clippers have nothing to fight for.
So do they come together or fall apart?
It would be interesting to see an NBA version of Major League happen here, complete with a naked cardboard cutout of Sterling in the LA locker room.
How heart warming would it be, and what a great story for ESPN, if this band of nobodies and washouts turned inward and found the strength needed to make the playoffs… and really that’s all they’d need to do to shock the NBA, just make the playoffs.
But it’s just as likely, and probably more so considering Baron Davis’s resume, that this team comes completely undone. TheLongTalk doesn’t expect this team to actually take the title of Worst Team Ever from the 72-73 Sixers, but it might be a squeakier. Can this team win more then 10 games?, probably. More then 20?, that’s tougher to say. Is Blake Griffin enough insurance against total disaster?
So worst case scenario, is it OK for Sterling to taunt his team?
If the worst were to happen, if Davis checks out even more then he already has, if he starts launching 3’s mindlessly? If Blake’s knees give out and Kaman goes spaceman? If Butler and Cook clock out? What then?
If his team totally quits on him, if they decide their done and just lay down? Would it be all right for Sterling to heckle them then?
He’s started to soon for sure, the season isn’t even half way over yet, but he’s got to pay them whether they win or not, shouldn’t he get some catharsis, shouldn’t he have some outlet for his anger? Shouldn’t he be free to say what everyone else is thinking?
TheLongTalk’s take, when you’re the worst team in the league you deserve whatever scorn you get, when you’re out of shape and unconditioned as a player you should expect complaints from ownership… but it’s insane to heckle your own team on your own sidelines.
Keep the team management issues between the team and management and save your heckling for the other guys. LeBron is just starting to get used to it and Kobe is an old hand, plus he’s right down the hall.
Contraction can’t come soon enough,