Free Agency 2012: Jamal Crawford to the Faltering Los Angeles Clippers

Ethan Sherwood Strauss@SherwoodStraussNBA Lead WriterJuly 5, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 20:  Jamal Crawford #11 of the Portland Trail Blazers dribbles the ball against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on February 20, 2012 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

This move is billed as "adding" to Chris Paul's supporting cast, but I'm not sure CP3 will be around long enough to see whatever this amalgam is. Signing Jamal Crawford to a four-year, $25 million deal (via Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated) makes little sense from my perspective. 

The Clippers were 17th in defensive efficiency, and they lost Reggie Evans (a key piece whenever they did play passable D) to free agency. They're bringing back Chauncey Billups and could probably retain Mo Williams if given the inclination. 

Jamal Crawford will not help with the defense. He plays a stocked position, and he tends to dominate a ball that should almost always be in Chris Paul's hands. He's also 32-years-old and is declining in productivity. 

What this moves shows, what many of the Clippers' moves show, is that this team has little inclination towards improvement. Owner Donald Sterling let his GM go, even though the guy brought Chris Paul in. Donald Sterling kept Vinny Del Negro, even though his clipboard command is famously mediocre. And Donald Sterling is presiding over another slide towards complacent mediocrity.