Los Angeles Clippers: Dwyane Wade

Clippers trying to emulate Heat

February, 6, 2014
Feb 6
LOS ANGELES -- Whenever Doc Rivers talks about championship expectations, championship defense and championship attitude, he points to the Miami Heat.

They are the unquestioned gold standard he holds up when trying to show the Los Angeles Clippers what they should aspire toward.

[+] EnlargeClippers/Heat
Kirby Lee/USA TODAY SportsThere's a lot the Clippers can learn from the Heat if they hope to one day see Miami in the Finals.
And why not? After back-to-back championships and three straight trips to the NBA Finals, there aren’t many other teams a coach would want his team to emulate besides the Heat. Rivers, as the coach of the Boston Celtics, faced the Heat in the playoffs three consecutive seasons and got a firsthand look at the team he wants his Clippers to one day become.

On Wednesday, he once again got a firsthand look at the Heat as they came to Staples Center and defeated the Clippers, 116-112.

It was the second time Miami has beaten L.A. this season. The Clippers quietly pointed at playing the second night of a road back-to-back after the first loss, and pointed at playing without Chris Paul and J.J. Redick -- in addition to playing their 12th game in their 10th different city in 19 days -- after Wednesday’s loss.

The truth: The Clippers weren’t better than the Heat then and they’re not better than the Heat now.

That’s no surprise. The Clippers are still in the process of trying to become the kind of team that is talked about in the same sentence as the Heat and, more importantly, will be in a position to play the Heat at the end of the season come June.

“Teams like the Heat and San Antonio have the ultimate trust in each other, in their systems, in their rotations,” Rivers said. “They very rarely make a mistake. As a matter of fact, you can tell when they do make a mistake because they want to look at each other like they want to kill each other. We’re still in the middle of that. It’s good to see teams do it, and they’ve done it. They’ve been through everything.”

(Read full post)

Chris Paul named captain for All-Star Saturday

January, 31, 2013
LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul and Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade were named captains for the Western Conference and Eastern Conference teams, respectively, for NBA All-Star Saturday Night in Houston, the league announced Thursday.

For the first time, State Farm All-Star Saturday Night will feature a format that pits the Western Conference against the Eastern Conference. Paul, making his sixth All-Star appearance, and Wade, a nine-time All-Star, will lead the teammates from their respective conference that will be competing in the four All-Star skills competitions.

In addition, NBA Cares and State Farm will make a joint donation of $500,000 as part of the event, with $350,000 going to the winning conference’s charities and $150,000 to the runner-up conference's charities. The Eastern Conference will be playing for Big Brothers Big Sisters and Make-A-Wish Foundation, while the Western Conference will compete for Boys & Girls Club of America and Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign. The charities were selected by Wade and Paul, the NBA, and State Farm.

"State Farm All-Star Saturday Night is a night for the fans and the events provide some of the most memorable moments in NBA history," Paul said. "Not only are we playing for bragging rights, but we are also raising money for charity, so it is definitely going to be a great night."

As part of the new format, points earned by each conference during the competitions will determine the conference that earns the title of 2013 State Farm All-Star Saturday Night Champion.

State Farm All-Star Saturday Night will take place on Saturday, Feb. 16 at the Toyota Center in Houston. The event consists of the Sears Shooting Stars, a competition featuring NBA players, WNBA players, and NBA legends; the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, a contest of top guards working against the clock to complete a series of passes, free throws, layups and agility drills; the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest; and the Sprite Slam Dunk contest.