Bringing back Chauncey Billups was a no brainer. A 5 time NBA All-Star and a 3 time All-NBA selection, Chauncey has also been an NBA Finals MVP and on the NBA Second All Defensive team. Chauncey has tons of playoff experience. He is one of only 5 players in the NBA who went to 7 straight conference finals.
During his career, Chauncey has averaged 15.5ppg while shooting 42% from the field and 39% from the 3 while hitting 90% from the line. Before going down with injury last season, Chauncey had no drop off in his numbers.
Chauncey has earned the reputation as Mr Big Shot. He is not afraid to take the big shot late in games and gives the Clippers another 4th quarter finisher along with Chris Paul. He told the world that he wanted to return to the Clippers and spoke glowingly about the culture change in LA for the Clippers. He even signed for about 4 Mil, which is way below the money he earned on his last contract. So bringing him back was a quite a big move for the Clippers. Not to mention that Chris Paul had already gone on record saying he definitely wanted him to return to the team. The good news is his return from injury could be earlier than expected. Many feel his return could be by Christmas but Chauncey says he could be in the starting lineup on opening day.
If that wasn't enough, the Clippers made another move to bring in the former 6th Man of the Year, Jamal Crawford. He was sought after by at least 6 other teams including the Knicks and the Lakers. At 6'5" and 32 years of age, the Clippers hope that Jamal has plenty left in the tank to back up Chauncey at shooting guard and even be able to start if Chauncey return is delayed.
Jamal has had a stellar career so far with 15ppg while hitting 41% from the field and 35% from the 3. He led the league in free throw shooting last season at 92.7%. He went for 52 points against Miami in 2007. On February 5, 2010, Crawford set an NBA record by surpassing Reggie Miller and completing his 24th career four-point play.
The Clippers now have two former 6th Man of the Year recipients as they added Lamar Odom to the lineup as well. In fact, two years ago when Lamar won, it was said the Jamal was second in the voting that year as well.
The signing of Jamal, continues the trend by the Clippers of surrounding their young superstars with veterans who have playoff experience. They have also been replacing shorter players with taller players. Last season the Clippers seemed to be undersized at almost every position in many games. This year they will be taller and better defensively at every position.
LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS VS SACRAMENTO KINGS - MARCH 19, 2013