These proposed moves, you may have heard them on our traditional Late Show on Tuesday night (11 pm on our Twitch channel). Except for the repeated clipped sound, hence the idea to put them on paper now. Let’s take a look at 3 moves that could potentially change the fortunes of the Los Angeles Clippers.
Fred VanVleet reunited with Kawhi Leonard
It’s interesting because his name – and that of Kyle Lowry – has been connected to the California franchise recently. Logic: the Clips need a leader or generally a guard capable of playing the pick-and-roll. The general idea when looking at the roster is to say that there must be a manager. But it is not even sure that a real game organizer is the real problem. The ball will still go to Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. The Boston Celtics don’t have a true point guard and they have the best offense in the NBA.
On the other hand, we need this third blade. This third man has the ability to hit ball after ball and make differences, which create differences. Here Fred VanVleet has a perfect profile. Champion with the Toronto Raptors (and with Leonard) in 2019, the former undrafted player rose through the ranks and now finds himself in a role that doesn’t really stick to his skin. It is not a first or second option. Rather a good third or fourth man in a formation like in Los Angeles.
He’s too scrappy, not athletic enough, and probably not good enough to claim more. Fortunately, he won’t be pressured by the Clippers. Not much has to be performed every night. As long as he shines 4 in 7 matches in each series. It’s also great insurance in case of a temporary breakdown from PG or Leonard: it potentially gives you a better chance of fielding two All-Stars at the same time each night and therefore looking for home advantage at the end of the regular season. season.
The Raptors will likely clean up in the next few days. It’s unlikely they’ll part with Pascal Siakam and/or OG Anunoby, unless there’s a good offer. On the other hand, the departures of Gary Trent Jr and Fred VanVleet, both of whom have an option for next season, are more plausible.
FVV is a player who averages around 20 points per game but that doesn’t mean Toronto is going to ask for too many assets in return. It’s even possible, given the nature of the market, that the franchise ends up accepting an offer that doesn’t include a first-round draft pick. It’s kind of the Clippers’ only chance. If the bidding goes up and a franchise offers a pick, even a protected one, it won’t go to LA. And Angelenos don’t really have any draft-round reserves anymore.
They need to try to sell interesting contracts – which will serve as future assets for the Raptors – and youngsters. Masai Ujiri will promote Ivica Zubac. He is the player the Clippers should not sacrifice. All others may be included as requested by Canadian leaders. Even Terance Mann.
The 26-year-old didn’t develop as expected after his playoff berth two years ago, but he’s an athletic and relatively young fullback who could interest the Raptors front office. If Toronto prefers Amir Coffey or BJ Boston, they will be included in the deal. Luke Kennard doesn’t have much exciting potential but his multi-season contract makes him a future asset with a move coming in a few months.
LA takes: Fred VanVleet
Toronto recovers: Luke Kennard, John Wall, Terance Mann, two second rounds.
Chris Paul has reunited with the Los Angeles Clippers
It will be a good story. The Phoenix Suns are rumored to be beginning to consider life without Chris Paul. There too, it is understandable. The veteran is physically feeling the blow and his production is down this season. He still has two years left on his contract. Except that the shooting window has closed and the Arizona franchise would probably prefer to opt for a quick move by freeing up cap space before fishing for big fish to surround Devin Booker.
CP3 won’t bring in too many assets, but the idea for the Suns is to stay competitive by freeing up payroll. Reggie Jackson’s expiring contract could be of interest to them. He was obviously weaker than Paul. But Phoenix still won’t win the title this season. The goal, once again, is to look good and then sell a project to free stars on the market.
LA takes: Chris Paul
Phoenix recovers: Reggie Jackson, Luke Kennard, Amir Coffey, a second round.
Free Evan Fournier!
Evan Fournier is stuck with the New York Knicks. And the Manhattan franchise doesn’t want to attach a pick to its contract to part with it. Except it devalues the Frenchman by not making him play. It’s a shame because the latter could really help some teams in the NBA. He just needs a more suitable role. Either the second playmaker – but he is perhaps too fair, innocent, in a team aiming for something other than a second round of the playoffs – or the brilliant sixth man from the bench.
The Clippers need a punch. If they fail to target VanVleet and Lowry (or Paul), they need to bring a real threat to their bench. Even if it means sacrificing other great supporting players. Luke Kennard, for example, could be of interest to the Knicks. Because unlike Fournier, he is a true shooter. He’s not great defensively but he can find his place in the rotation more easily thanks to his specialty.
LA takes: Evan Fournier
New York recovers: Luke Kennard