August 06, 2013
Chris Paul: "I think our team will definitely go as Blake goes"
Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul had a recent sit down with ESPN's Ramona Shelburne to talk expectations and the offseason for Lob City. Paul signed a five-year, $95 million extension last month, not long after they signed head coach Doc Rivers to a three-year, $21 million contract. Added personnel for the Clippers this summer includes shooters J.J. Redick and Jared Dudley, and back up point guard Darren Collison.
Paul expressed his angst entering his ninth year in the league, acknowledging his shortcomings and the desire to reach his championship goals in the time he has left. A large portion of his discussion with Shelburne featured Paul's teammate Blake Griffin, and how their relationship has been manifesting. Paul admitted there were adjustments that had to be made on both sides, but gave his pick-and-roll partner high praise, calling Griffin a "special player in this league" and implying the Clippers' success will be synonymous with Griffin's.
I expect to see a more fluent half court Clipper offense with Doc Rivers making the calls, but Paul and Griffin's pick-and-roll game is the crux of their attack. With more three point shooting in the mix (Redick, Dudley) Rivers will have options to space the floor for that two-man game. That being said, I think Chris Paul is onto something. I think Blake Griffin is heading into a portion of his career that needs to be special, particularly under an expert play caller such as Doc Rivers. Still, it could be Griffin's duty, even more so than Paul's, to come up big come next April/May. I believe he is the second best playmaker on this Clipper team, even as an undersized big, because of his ability to pass, dribble, or finish off the catch and off the bounce. This requisite two-man game needs Griffin's thorough skill set to truly flourish, and then maybe Chris Paul can stop doing offseason interviews about how he wants to win a championship. Check out a Paul-Griffin highlight reel below and their first commercial together, which was released today, via Foot Locker.