The Complete Idiot's Guide to Fixing the Los Angeles Clippers

Bleacher ReportCorrespondent IMay 14, 2009

Alright, where to begin...

As a Clippers fan for the better part of a decade, this season was probably the most painful to watch.  Not necessarily because of their less than stellar record, but because of the talent that this team has and the expectations that people had for them heading into the season.

With the numerous injuries that plagued the Clippers, whether it was Chris Kaman's lingering foot issue or Baron Davis' and Marcus Camby's minor ailments, the team was never completely healthy.

Not only were the Clippers having injury issues, but the acquisition of possibly the league's most notorious poison, Zach Randolph, put the icing on the cake.  Personally, I don't care how much talent you have, because if you're a headcase, which Randolph fits the bill, you're not going to be the one to rehabilitate the Clippers.

But, that's enough dwelling on the past for one article. The reality is that the Clippers have some personnel issues that need to be addressed before anything is done with the roster.  

First, Mike Dunleavy needs to be removed from his coaching post. He's way past his prime and there are numerous candidates who would be better fits for leading this team. Avery Johnson, Eddie Jordan, Scott Skiles, and possibly Stan Van Gundy are four candidates that could help resurrect this team.  

Another change that would help the Clippers' causes would be Donald Sterling's selling of the team. There is no doubt that he is the worst owner in the NBA, if not all of professional sports. If you're looking for a complete 180-degree reversal, that would need to be the first step in rebuilding this franchise.

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But the odds of that happening are slim. The team does have a top pick in the upcoming NBA draft and there are a few players that could help bring the Clippers out of the basement.

The Clippers have the third-highest odds of winning the lottery and earning the first selection. For the sake of this article, I will assume that the Clippers have the third pick

In terms of value, they couldn't go wrong with Hasheem Thabeet. Regardless of the Clippers having both Marcus Camby and Chris Kaman, Thabeet could spend the first year learning from one of the best centers in league history, in Camby, and improving both his offensive and defensive games.

However, by selecting Thabeet, it would mean that the team would need to move Chris Kaman in order to satisfy other needs.

Though, when you look at this Clippers roster, there isn't one evident need.  They have two solid swingmen, Eric Gordon and Al Thornton, as well as established post players such as Marcus Camby, Chris Kaman and Zach Randolph, and Baron Davis as the point guard.

Obviously, Davis isn't the point guard of the future, so drafting one this year wouldn't be a bad idea.

One prospect that would fit in nicely with the Clippers is Brandon Jennings. However, I don't think Jennings is worthy of the third pick in this draft, which could possibly result in a draft day trade.  

Tyreke Evans could be another prospect that the Clippers' radar. Whether he's set on being a combo guard or focusing more on one position would determine many teams' interest in Evans.

Obviously, if the Clippers were to get a higher pick, Ricky Rubio would be the obvious choice. He probably has the highest skill-set of any guard in this year's draft and would fit the description of the future point guard for the Clippers.

If the Clippers are looking to make trades, there are a few players that could net some value. Baron Davis was shopped heavily at the trade deadline this year, and the Clippers could possibly get some value for him. He does have a very long contract, which could shy some teams away.

Marcus Camby's contract is up at the end of next year and if the Clippers were to do so, they could probably get something in return for him. Other than that, there aren't too many moves that this team needs to make. The majority of the players are in the long-term plan and probably won't be moved any time soon.

The moral of the story is simple. Having a good front office is just as important as the talent that your team possesses. This year's Clippers team also shows how important chemistry is and how talent isn't.


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