Antawn Jamison to the Clippers (New Interview Inside) (P. 8)

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Clippersfan86
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Agent that sounds like a lot of hypothetical situations to me. The bench wasn't our issue last year and won't be this year. Defensively and offensively we were at the top last year and I expect it to be the same. Jamison/Mullens/Hollins is much better than Hollins/Turiaf/Odom all around.

clipnasty
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I can say that Jamison and Mullens are better defensively than Turiaf and Odom.

Clippersfan86
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Turiaf and Odom are better defenders but much worse offensive players. Not to mention as I said before Odom became a mediocre defender the last 3 months of the season including the playoffs.

Agent0
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I'm not really sure what I wrote that you consider hypothetical, but I'm not really sure how you are using the term or what you are referring to. Going to have to help me out on this one sir, please and thank you!

The defensive prowess last season was a bit of a fallacy. Ranked 8th but going into the playoffs had been average at best defensively for about 2 months (probably a bit of teams scouting to avoid the pressure, but also due to playing better opponents who weren't going to panic at a hard show/trap on the pick and roll and turn it over).

The defensive ranking was good based off turning teams over due to a scrambling defense. That was the only area the Clippers were actually "good" at defensively last season, not just good, great, best in the league, #1 in opponent TOV%, but defensive rebounding, opponent eFG% were all average or above average, and fouling was bad. This meant in a game where the Clippers weren't forcing turnovers with traps and pick and roll pressure (teams with calm PG's and who moved the ball well), the remaining core of the defense was an average (mid teens) to slightly below average defense (low teens).

The defense was never specifically / consistently effective against teams that didn't cave against pressure but it demolished weaker teams even more so than a Indiana different style of defense would. The real thing to look at though was that the starting lineup (not with Billups, but with Green) was not good on defense, they were average - below average actually, maybe worse. It was actually the bench that boosted the teams defensive ranking as the bench was GREAT on defense, so it pulled up that average level defense of the starters up to a good defensive team.

Now, of course, Doc's strong side defensive system is not reliant on pressure the same way, but because of it's principles, it also forces turnovers. The starters just based on the system and better defenders in Redick and Dudley should be above average on defense. That system has a better track record with eFG%, but KG also is part of that track record. Defensive rebounding that's really about the players, and fouling is both player and coaching / team / discipline related.

The bench on the other hand has massively downgraded on defense, so that boost from last season isn't there. Based on the new roster, if Doc wasn't the coach and bringing his defense, this defense would rank worse than last season, maybe early teens just based on the players.

This year we should see this:

Starters: Better offense / better defense

Bench: Better offense / worse defense

I think this team has the capability of being the best offense in the league. Defensively, I can't predict because there are too many unknowns. With the average coach, this is probably about a 12th-14th ranked defense. With Doc, at the least I feel it should be in the 8-10 range. It's hard to be elite because the starters would have to be super elite, then the bench (only two actual >average defenders in Barnes and Bullock and all below average / poor big man defenders) could be average which balances out to a top 5 level defense.

It's probably a bit homerish for us to assume that even with improvements, Blake and DJ in one training camp would become anchors of a defensive unit that would basically holding opponent to on average <98 pts/100 for 30+ MPG.

Clippersfan86
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Defensive stoppers off the bench generally don't make much of an impact. We had one of the best defensive benches in NBA history yet come playoff time THEY DID NOTHING. What they did do is regularly go 5-7 minutes without a bucket. History shows that an offensive minded bench is greatly superior to a defensive one, time and time again. Collison and Barnes will defend decently on the perimeter and Hollins can defend a little bit.

I don't know what we're arguing about though because I agree with you on what you said we should see this year. Starters better on both ends, bench better on offense, worse on defense. I'm not arguing we didn't trade defense for offense but rather that bench defense isn't too significant in the big picture.

TheDude
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Andrew Han was saying the same thing in the podcast the other day. As lamar got into better shape, somehow he got worse defensively. I noticed it too.

Clippersfan86
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Yea I caught the podcast too Very Happy. It was so weird to see and I kept telling people... WTF he seems to be declining as he gets into better shape, not getting better as we expected. Maybe he did coke to shed the weight and that's what caused the decline?

Agent0
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There's a bit of clarification discussion going on, I don't think in the big picture we have opposing thoughts.

The playoffs were a bad judge anyways, the rotations were different from the season, Blake got injured, Crawford the main bench scorer got matched up with Tony Allen defensively who he couldn't just iso crossover and score over.

Technically the bench outproduced the starters in the playoffs at every position except for PG and PF (no duh). The best offensive producers in the playoffs were: Paul Barnes Bledsoe Crawford Injured Griffin

Even Odom was just as good as DJ on offense in the post-season, both horrible btw, despite 36.7% FG shooting. Three starters, Butler, Billups, DJ were three of the worst offensive players in the post-season. The bench just looked worse because they had less of Paul destroying a defense individually to make up for it. I don't know if there were any 5 minute droughts though, that might be a bit much.

The best bench is really a balanced bench, but generally you can't get enough quality scorers on a bench (cause those guys are starters or make too much) so you need 1-2 guys to take on the scoring load with the bench. Defensively, what this team would look for isn't "bench defense", or a defensive bench unit, but bench player(s) to compliment the starters with their defense.

I guess this all comes down to whether we can toss DJ on the court for 34 minutes, sometimes 40 minutes in a game. In the playoffs, other teams are doing that, so if DJ can only play 28-30, you'll still have to be able to defend some teams starters for 10 MPG.

In the playoffs, there's going to be 40 MPG of Dwight Howard and James Harden against someone like Houston. 10 minutes of inability to effectively defend the post (Howard) and protect the paint (Harden drives) might mean they score an extra 2.5 baskets, but thats a -5 stretch per game game. That's pressure on the starters to be on average greater than +5 for the other 30 minutes to be ahead.


As much as he got hated for it, Vinny might have been better off going to small ball right after Blake got injured and starting Barnes because the starting lineup of Paul/Billups/Butler/Odom/DJ ended up featuring Paul + the 4 worst offensive guys in the whole series.

Talk about having to carry your teammates. In hindsight, which of course is 20/20, he should have just gone with Paul/Bledsoe/Butler/Barnes/DJ and see what happens.

Clippersfan86
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If DJ can't play 32+ minutes and step up we are screwed period. Because then he will have effectively detonated his value league wide. Teams will say oh it wasn't Vinny, Doc also couldn't get more out of him.. so he's clearly an overpaid, average starter.

Agent0
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Yup, you are correct, but at least his contract won't be on the hook for too much longer after that. We will be stuck with him though, but also, you'd be surprised how tradeable some players actually are when you talk to the right GM's at just the right time (Joe Johnson, Bargnani etc)

Clippersfan86
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Yup. After this year, just 1 more year. So our saving grace is that if we trade him next summer he will have value because he's an 11 mill a year expiring.

Akclipps
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so is Jamison really a bad pick up? or can we benefit from this

Clippersfan86
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He's a solid pickup at worst considering it's a minimum, 1 year deal. People forget he was injured pretty bad with his hand second half of last season and still put up a very efficient 10/5 off the bench. Chris Paul will get him 3-4 easy buckets a game no problem.

Amnesty_David_Stern
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People need to quit calling this a bad pick up. Jamison is a typical former All Star player in the twilight years of his career, whose veteran experience is looked upon by the top contending teams to help fill the bench in hopes that it lands the team, and said veteran player a championship ring. It's all fun and games to get 20 points 10 boards a year, but at some point stats aren't the only thing guys want or need.

Our team went out and got him, he didn't beg to come here. And he probably could have taken more money to play in a crap location we don't know! Our team and fans should consider themselves lucky, just like when Miami got Rashard Lewis, GS got Jermaine O'Neal and the list goes on and on. Who the hell would have ever thought we'd have a bench with All-Stars, award winners and so forth? How about Miami, Golden State, Laker fans and so forth? This isn't common, were a great team and we have the luxury of getting guys like this to help fill our bench as a 8th, 9th, 10th or 11th guy off the bench.

pageC4
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@Amnesty_David_Stern

I'm glad to see some support for these aquisitions. I Think the front office solved the main issue's we needed: better coaching and better perimeter shooting. Would it be nice to have also gotten some defensive bench players,sure but anyone fitting that role was asking for more than we could give (Elton Brand for example). Other options like Shavlik, Johnson, or anyone else are completely bashed by many people, so there's not going to be anyone to please the entire fan base. These are the decisions the front office made, and while I don't like all of them I'm ready to support this team

namzug
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I don't think its necessarily a bad pick, its just that a lot of us wanted a banger. Antawn doesn't fill that. I think if we would of picked up a Jermaine Oneal instead of Mullens most of us would have been pretty happy with this pick, or even Ayon or Bernard James. Everybody on here just wants the best for our team, we might have different opinions but nobody is really speaking ignorantly just different opinions. That Is what I like about this forum everyone can speak there mind and there are few of us which look at things from different perspectives.

I hope that we get the best out of everyone, i might be skeptical (its my nature), but hope for the best regardless. Antawn is a solid offensive player and below average defender, I felt similar to Jamal when we got him (even though I am pissed at Jamal since they canceled his camp and my son was super disappointed and am still waiting on my refund), but that worked out very well so lets hope for the best.

pageC4
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@namzug

I think you made a good point. Members here on CTB all share different opinions on players. I see the value in defensive guys, and I second the notion that we do need a defensive minded guy to balance out this more offensive roster. Still, that never happened. As fans we were not privy to all the people the FO reached out to, or which of the available players might have priced themselves out or wanted starters time. Rather than take this into account everyone seems to bash these picks as if these bench players were pure garbage.

Agent0
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Nothing bad about it really. Jamison would be a bad pick up if he was making significant money or if the plan was to play him more than spot minutes.

For his assumed role, it's a fine pick up. Really at this stage, a pick-up is ranked as bad/good based on need rather than on whether the player is good or bad. Most of the players available now are guys who do something really well but probably suck at other things unless they wouldn't be available. So you aren't getting all-round players, it's just trying to figure out which guys are the best fits, and whose weaknesses can be hidden.

Mullens was supposedly told by Doc that he wants to use him to stretch the floor as a C next to Blake and a PF next to DJ at times. He hasn't yet shown he can be a good 3PT shooter. Jamison is another option in case Mullens shooting isn't where it needs to be, or just if in camp Jamison comes out as the better fit and picks things up better.

Good to have more than one option. I think Jamison and another more defensive minded big as the alternate option is Hollins doesn't fit the roles Doc wants him to as well as he'd like is a good way to round out the needed players fits.

ClipsShow
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Now Chris Paul finally has someone he can consistently run the pick & pop with

da11da
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This was a horrible pick up.

Akclipps
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If you notice all of our new players can flat out score.. scoring is hard to teach in the nba and only experience can develop it. I think Doc made the team this way because he knows everyone on this team can score and its a plus for him that way he doesn't have to worry and take too much time about teaching a player how to score individually but focus on how our players will develop their defense. Doc Rivers is that confident on his system

namzug
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I agree in what you said Akclipps, scoring is not something easily taught at the NBA level (or else Tony Allen would be a top 5 SG in the NBA). I don't think it's just the confidence in the system, which I do think is a part of it, but also the confidence in the players. What really excites me about it, is that I think it is his confidence in our to starting bigs is being shown by these acquisitions. I really am starting to think that Doc really believes that Blake and DJ will be a great defensive frontcourt, and that is why he can get these scorers to fill around them.

I think this is the part that we forget (myself included),where he has a more intricate view of. He can see these guys practice and question them and pick their brains. I really think these guys are going to step up simultaneously in their ownrespect. I do think DJ will improve slightly in Free throws probably low 50's, and become a defensiveanchor.I think Blake will improvedefensively, mainly just by mastering his rotations with DJ and the team, but become such a force offensively that he will wear his opponents down. I also think that both will increase on their defensive rebounding, but I don't think that is a big surprise.

I just worry that like many of us (again myself included, since I'm a DJ supporter), can be blinded by our own ideas.As people itis sometimes hard toput in a contingency plan if you believe in something so much that yourefuse to think it could fail.

tense2
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Good article by Grantland on what Jamison brings to the Clippers. I'll give you a hint...in ain't D, which we all knew, lol.:

http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-trian ... e-clippers

Agent0
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namzug, I think Tony Allen's problem is more shooting, injuries and wild play than it is an inability to score, though he has scored 13.8 pts/36 on .539 TS% for his career, which really isn't bad for a guy who is quite inept at shooting, isn't and isn't a specifically saavy ball handler or anything.

I think having a team of guys that can score is nice, though you don't actually need all 5 players on the court to be scorers. Considering they were first going after Odom, I think Doc and the coaching realize the need for defense, and maybe they were hoping they could get Odom shooting adequately again. It seems like since that option went away, they are trying to make sure the role of stretch big is filled well because they didn't want to limit themselves to relying on just Mullens to do that (just in case he doesn't shoot so well).

Balance on the bench is nice, but let's say you can't actually fulfill that? Why not just get a bench that can put up points effectively when they are on? Jamison is not super efficient most of the time as a scorer, but he's quite efficient overall offensively because he does not turn the ball over.

Last season: Collison: 14.8 pts/36, .575 TS%, 111 Ortg Crawford: 20.3 pts/36, .558 TS%, 109 Ortg Barnes: 14.4 pts/36, .566 TS%, 113 Ortg Jamison: 15.7 pts/36, .561 TS%, 114 Ortg Hollins: 11.2 pts/36, .674 TS%, 115 Ortg

That bench produces an average of 112.4 pts/100 possessions, which is really good. Of course if they were a starting lineup, they wouldn't be as productive cause roles change, etc, and they probably won't do that well, but they can probably put up 110 pts/100 possessions on average when playing the average opposing bench.

Even with the defensive boost the opposing bench will have playing against them, they can probably be +2-3 pts/100 on average against other benches, so they won't loose leads on average, on good days, against sucky benches will extend leads, what more can you ask for?

It's hard in one off-season to fill every single hole on your team if money isn't plentiful.

The bench had a defensive identity last year. You can't replicate that because of the available players, well have some sort of identity. This year, the bench will have an offensive identity. They might not be able to really contain anyone, but other benches will have a hard time outscoring these guys for 13 MPG.

Note: That was a high for Jamison in Ortg since 08-09 and a career second best TS%, but he was also more of a scoring option in Cleveland (and Washington), now as less of an option, he should be more efficient, hopefully.


ps. I also acknowledge that the playoffs are a different animal, and scoring even from a bench can become a little more difficult, but their playoff minutes should decrease anyways.

uncool
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PLAYA VISTA Minutes after he arrived at the Clippers training facility in Playa Vista for the first time as a member of the team, Antawn Jamison was touring his new digs.

He stepped onto the dimly lit court, a place he last visited three years ago when the Cavaliers practiced prior to a regular-season game in L.A.

"It's a lovely facility," the 37-year-old forward said.

"The only thing they're missing is a championship. That's the only reason why I'm here. I'm glad that things worked out. It took a while for it to get done, but patience is a virtue. And we were able to get it worked out and I think I can come in and contribute and be that piece that makes this organization very special."

Jamison, who officially agreed to terms with the Clippers Wednesday afternoon, is projected to play a reserve role as a sharp-shooter from the perimeter. He is fifth among active players in offensive rebounds and is a season removed from averaging 17.2 points per game in Cleveland. Jamison's on-the-court production will be part of the equation, but so, too, will his ability as a leader.

"The thing about this situation, I know it's going to be good, because in the past I've been the leader of a rebuilding process or other situations taking place, but now it's about maybe lending an ear to Blake [Griffin] or talking to DeAndre [Jordan]," Jamison said. "Me and C.P. (Chris Paul) have known each other ever since he's been in the league, so I have his respect as well."

And while his days an All-Star and top-flight talent are gone, Jamison noted: "Also, I can still play the game of basketball, too, so that helps as well.

"I've always been consistent. Being a vocal leader out there on the court, being able to talk, it really helps out everybody else. I'm not the best defensive player, but team defense I think goes unnoticed a little bit. He told me, 'I'm not going to put you on an island, but if you get to the spots I need you to get to, you're going to be fine.' Those are the things I think people take for granted: understanding, being able to have that basketball IQ. And I think you'll see a little bit of that."

Jamison played his first four seasons with the Golden State Warriors before being dealt to the Dallas Mavericks in 2003-04. After one season in Dallas he was shipped to Washington, where along with Gilbert Arenas and former Clipper Caron Butler he formed the nucleus of a perennial contender. Jamison said it was his sixth year, and first in Washington, when he became comfortable as not only a player who lead by example, but someone who was vocal as well.

"I always led by example, came in first into practice, played hard, listened to the coach," said Jamison, whose No. 33 jersey was retired by the University of North Carolina after three seasons in Chapel Hill. "I was always was what you want a player to do, but it wasn't until I got to D.C. when it was kind of, not thrown upon me, but it was an opportunity for me to do that (be a vocal leader). It just came natural. I spoke, guys listened. I was able to communicate with the coaches and the players and things like that, so that stage made it comfortable for me to be that type of leader."

He sounded confident that those qualities will be invaluable for the Clippers in 2013-14. Similar to last season, the roster is a mix of youth and veterans, players in their prime or slightly exiting it. Among the team's five frontcourt players, Jamison is the oldest by nearly a decade.

"We have a talented team," Jamison said. "As far as me, whether it's that second unit, or wherever the minutes are, just having that positive outlook, that positive attitude. For the teammates to see that this guy's been in the league for 16 years and doesn't complain about nothing. He just goes out there and does his job. Those are the things that I think I bring to this team and to this organization."

Jamison is engaging, calm and good-natured. When he toured the facility he shook hands with nearly everyone he passed in the hallways, met with Rivers and posed for pictures holding up a white No. 33 Clippers jersey. He said he doesn't envision playing beyond the 2014-15 season and chose to be a Clipper because it was an opportunity to win the championship that has so far eluded him.

"I can tell you one thing, every team in the Western Conference would fear us in a seven-game series if we're clicking and playing unselfish basketball," Jamison said. "The only that matters is winning, not how many touches I've got or how many times I've seen the ball in the last three or four minutes. It's going to take some time but the one thing that makes it easier to attain is that guy up there."

Jamison paused, tilting his head towards Rivers' office that overlooks the court.

"I think he'll have our ears, we respect him, he's won it," he continued. "He's probably one of the best coaches in the league today. Having him will pretty much speed up the process, but this is a team that can win right now. And that's the one thing that really intrigued me. I like the makeup and I think adding me as a certain piece to this puzzle, we can really make this organization special by winning. And in my heart I really didn't want to go anywhere else."

namzug
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Great find Uncool. I didn't like the pick at first, but it is growing on me rapidly. The fact that he really wanted to come here and even waited as we figured out what we wanted to do, and still came here with eagerness is good to hear.

Voyeur
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Jamison is a veteran who wants to be here. He wants to offer advice to Blake. He has confidence in this team. He thinks he can contribute off the bench. What's not to like?

Clippersfan86
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Uncool can you post a link please? Extremely happy you found that article. I edited it and spaced it out for you so it doesn't blow anybody's eyes up.

Clippersfan86
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I found it.

http://www.nba.com/clippers/news/jamison-brings-leadership-added-shoot ing-clippers

http://www.nba.com/clippers/video/2013/ ... p4-2579920

Enjoy this interview from today with Jamison.

Yet another new Clipper calls us first class Very Happy

ClipsGForce
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I think we will be pleasant surprise with Jamison. Just like Barnes last year, Jamison will give us something positive. I have all trust on Docs to make the defensive system work. Defense assignment is more of team assignment and effort than individuality.

TheDude
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It's true he didn't want to go anywhere else. That in itself is a great thing for the team. A lot of what he says makes sense.

I don't think he's salvagable as a defender but it doesn't mean we can't be winning his minutes. He can't be out there with Blake, it's got to be DJ or Hollins. Maybe Mullens if he takes a jump with some guidance.

How much AJ can help us depends more on DJ and Hollin's defense than his own.

namzug
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@namzug I think you made a good point. Members here on CTB all share different opinions on players. I see the value in defensive guys, and I second the notion that we do need a defensive minded guy to balance out this more offensive roster. Still, that never happened. As fans we were not privy to all the people the FO reached out to, or which of the available players might have priced themselves out or wanted starters time. Rather than take this into account everyone seems to bash these picks as if these bench players were pure garbage.
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pageC4
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I wonder what made him choose China? Anyhow, I suspect we will know eventually

clipsclaps
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Jared Zwerling: The Bulls, Clippers, Knicks and Pacers all had interest in Ivan Johnson. The higher money in China proved to be the key difference. Twitter @JaredZwerling

Clippersfan86
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Now we can stop the BS about the front office/Doc blowing it.

pageC4
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Exactly. I'm very sure that this front office knows that the front court needs to be composed of good defenders, and while we did have a lot of fire power after the aquisitons of Dudley, and Redick, acquiring defensive players to balance that out was not as easy as people were making it out to be. As the above poster mentioned the lure of more money will speak to some players, as it did with guys like Elton Brand, who received more than we could give him being that Barnes was still unsigned and we had no one to fill the void left when Bledsoe was dealt away.

namzug
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86- never said Doc or the front office had blown it, just wanted different players. I thought we passed on Ivan specifically due to him calling KG a dirty player. I wasn't high on Antawn but am buying into the idea.

I've liked what we have done just wanted and still want a high energy defensive big. Maybe thought we could have gotten more for Bledsoe, but was content with what we got. I think some of us might have had different ideas of players we wanted on the team, but I don't think the majority of us were calling out Doc or the FO. Wishing we went after our own preferred players or player types doesn't translate into us thinking that the FO blew it; or even not liking a pick.

pageC4
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From what I can recall you have been respectful about your disagreements regarding players. Some people have been downright messed up

Clippersfan86
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Like Page said you've been classy so I'm not talking about you. I'm talking about guys who have flat out insulted the front office in a personal fashion over these decisions.

namzug
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Just checking, don't mind being called out on my mistakes as long as I was wrong. I've seen other people get called out and I don't mind when it happens, but I won't go into the fetal position.

I've seen some of the comments, but I think it's all just being upset about the team not getting their guy. I didn't want Jamal last year, but he grew on me quickly(actually think we are being a little harsh on him on because of his weird tweets- I hate social media). I think Jamison could be the same type player Jamal was last year.

CP3Heliflopter
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I am just a bit upset that we didn't get a single banger but I admit there weren't too many options available. Less than I expected especially with Odom and his "issues". I am confident that we can pull something off in the middle of the season if necessary. Hopefully BG and DJ take the next step.

namzug
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I think Ivan is thinking he will make money for the family in China and then come audition with a contender after Feb. I would guess all the teams that showed interest would pursue him once he comes back, unless they found another player to fill his role.

tense2
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There will be plenty of time to add a missing piece to the "puzzle" before the trade deadline if necessary...not too worried.

Ivan can go make his money...there will be better choices to pick from via a trade or players getting released IMO.

Voyeur
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Great interview with an obviously excited Antawn Jamison:

http://espn.go.com/espnradio/play?id=9617506&s=espn

pageC4
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true, also by trade deadline things happen to cause teams to let players go. some players may be disgruntled on certain team and opportunities arise

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