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Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Report cards: Bledsoe

By Pedro Moura

Here is the eighth player capsule in our ongoing look back at the 2011-2012 season for the Los Angeles Clippers and forward at the 2012-2013 season. The series runs until next Tuesday, examining every player who finished the season on the roster as well as the head coach.

We started with rookies Trey Thompkins and Travis Leslie, moved on to small forwards Ryan Gomes and Bobby Simmons and then Chauncey BillupsKenyon Martin and Reggie Evans. Now, we do Eric Bledsoe.

2011-2012 contributions: Bledsoe missed the first month of the season while recovering from an offseason meniscus tear and didn't even get into the rotation until March, but he was very productive in the final month and in the playoffs. In fact, Bledsoe was arguably the Clippers' third or fourth most important player in their playoff run, when he consistently came in and injected energy to the rest of the club during his limited minutes. He finished the team's 11 playoff games with averages of 7.9 points, 2.1 assists and 1.2 steals, but those numbers don't do his production justice. Bledsoe was, to put it simply, a postseason revelation.

2012-2013 prediction: He's a key piece to the puzzle going forward, and it'll be interesting to see how his role changes over this offseason depending on what the Clippers do around him. His status will change significantly based on whether or not Mo Williams chooses to return next season. Ideally, Bledsoe would be a 20-25 minute per-game guard next season, serving as Paul's direct backup but also sharing the court with him at times. But if Williams comes back, that'll be different.

Grade: B+