Prevention Thoughts: LAC 121, CHI 82

Your recap is above, and the Preventions will follow…

Chicago Bulls superstar point guard Derrick Rose was ruled out indefinitely after tearing his meniscus against the Portland Trailblazers on Friday. Coach Tom Thibodeau hinted on his return to the courts as short-lived. Injured superstars are a bad omen to the Clippers. The team feels their pain and wishes they wouldn’t be forced to lose against an elite team like Los Angeles. So they’d go easy on them, play to the level of their competition, take the team lightly – anything to see that Chicago returns home with a feel good win. It was anything but a feel good win. More like a painful, heartbreaking loss.

And that’s just what the red, white and blue did, leading the entire game wire to wire as the city still searching for a nickname delivered a franchise record setting 39 point lead against Chicago. It was the highest lead the Clippers ever maintained since the Clippers became the Clippers – and I’m not talking about the loser Clippers. I’m talking about the fabled Buffalo Braves who secured a 37 point lead twice, once in 1975, and the second three years later. Yesterday’s escape against the Sacramento Kings – a breath-taking thriller, might I add – was the 11th game of the season where the Clippers allowed a team to score 100 points or more. This game was only the fifth time in the season where an opponent failed to reach the century mark.

But wait, there’s more. The Clippers prevented a season high 70 points by a season high 33 contested shots. Ryan “Bruin” Hollins broke the record for most contested attempts in a game with 9 shot stoppages, all without fouling. That is absurd. Rookie Reggie Bullock also had a season high in help defense, 4 of which were counted. He assisted on one of nine contested shots by Hollins, a steal committed by Antawn Jamison, a block from Blake Griffin, and a steal for Jamal Crawford. Talk about firsts!

The biggest first I found, and one highly criticized by sports analysts, is Blake Griffin’s double teaming ability, which I call hockey assists. In the third quarter, Griffin had a chance to pull off a lay-up or one of his signature slam dunks. Instead of taking it to the rack himself, he relinquished control of the rock to high flyer teammate DeAndre Jordan, who tracked down an open Jared Dudley from mid-range. He was a hot commodity for the Clippers on that Sunday afternoon, going 8 of 10 on global field goals, 4 of 5 in 3-ball speak. This is the type of assist Blake Griffin needs to master: one where he forfeits his chance at an assist tally in the box score so that another teammate can find an open shot for an open shooter. Hockey assists not only benefits the offense in improved scoring opportunities, it also prevents the defense from attempting a turnover whether it’s by directly closing in on the true shooter or by disrupting the secondary pass with a steal or an out-of-bounds deflection.

Antawn Jamison also got some burn for the Clippers, putting up 11 points in the box score, but preventing 8 points, a possession, an assist and a turnover. Bullock is starting to show signs of his defensive awareness with 9 points, 1.25 possessions and an assist prevention. Byron Mullens was demoted to Human Victory Cigar. The 3-point defense continues to grow as Chris Paul and company limited the Bulls to just a third on shots made, open shots and contested shots. Thanks to the 39 point margin, the Clippers have jumped from the bottom of the defensive rankings to 22nd. The season looks good for the red, white and blue.

The question is, can they sustain it?

Total Points Prevented: 70 PTS
Possessions Lost: 12
Preventions Box Score

Players
-------
CP - Chris Paul
JR - J.J. Redick
JD - Jared Dudley
BG - Blake Griffin
DJ - DeAndre Jordan
DC - Darren Collison
JC - Jamal Crawford
MB - Matt Barnes
AJ - Antawn Jamison
BM - Byron Mullens
MW - Maalik Wayns
WG - Willie Green
RB - Reggie Bullock
RH - Ryan Hollins

Abbreviations
-------------
PTS - Points
ORB - Offensive Rebound
AST - Assist
BLK - Block
STL - Steal
CON - Contested
SCR - Screen/Pick
OFF - Offensive Foul
FTO - Forced Turnover
TOV - Turnover
DELAY - Dead ball situation
DEF - Deflected out-of-bounds
JMP - Jump ball
POS - Possession
(H) - Help

All events are written in order.

1st Quarter
-----------
2 PTS - 1 CON - DJ
2 PTS - 1 CON - JR
1 POS - 1 SAVE - JD
2 PTS - 1 OFF - JR
1 AST - 1 STL - JR
2 PTS - 1 CON - JR
1 DELAY - DEF - BG
3 PTS - 1 CON - JR
1 POS - 1 STL - CP
1 TOV - 1 SCR - BG
2 PTS - 1 BLK - CP
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH
1 TOV - 1 SCR - RH
2 PTS - 1 CON - RB

2nd Quarter
-----------
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH,RB(H)
1 TOV - 1 SCR - AJ
1 DELAY - DEF - DC
2 PTS - 1 CON - DC
1 AST - 1 STL - AJ,RB(H)
1 AST - 1 FTO - RB
1 TOV - 1 SCR - DJ
1 TOV - 1 SCR - BG
2 PTS - 1 BLK - DJ
1 POS - 1 FTO - CP
1 AST - 1 STL - JR
1 TOV - 1 SCR - BG
2 PTS - 1 CON - JR
2 PTS - 1 CON - BG
2 PTS - 1 BLK - BG
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH
1 TOV - 1 SCR - RH
1 POS - 1 STL - CP,RH(H)

MISSED CREDITS
--------------
NONE

3rd Quarter
-----------
1 POS - 1 CLK - CP,DJ(3 sec)
1 TOV - 1 SCR - BG
2 PTS - 1 CON - JR
2 PTS - 1 BLK - BG
2 PTS - 1 STL - BG
1 TOV - 1 HAS - BG
1 TOV - 1 SCR - DJ
1 POS - 1 ORB - DJ
1 TOV - 1 SCR - BG
2 PTS - 1 CON - RB,BG(H)
2 PTS - 1 CON - BG
2 PTS - 1 BLK - BG,RB(H)
1 POS - 1 STL - JC,RB(H)
3 PTS - 1 CON - RB
1 POS - 1 SAVE - RB
1 POS - 1 FTO - AJ
1 POS - 1 ORB - RH
1 POS - 1 STL - DC

Final Quarter
-------------
2 PTS - 1 CON - AJ
3 PTS - 1 CON - AJ
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH,DC(H)
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH
1 POS - 1 CLK - DC,RB,JC,RH
1 TOV - 1 SCR - RH
1 TOV - 1 SCR - RH
1 DELAY - DEF - DC
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH,DC(H)
2 PTS - 1 CON - RB
2 PTS - 1 CON - RH
3 PTS - 1 CON - AJ
2 PTS - 1 CON - WG
-- END --

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