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Looking beyond the Clippers' surge

Some questions remain, but L.A. has looked great and needs to be taken seriously

Updated: February 1, 2012, 1:53 PM ET
By Kevin Arnovitz | ESPNLosAngeles.com

NBA coaches -- even in defeat -- are often complimentary of opponents, but it wasn't lost on anyone when Scott Brooks called the Los Angeles Clippers, "the best team we've faced all season."

Brooks' Oklahoma City Thunder squad came into Staples Center as the West's sole superpower. In a conference loaded with a lot of good teams still appraising their assets, the Thunder know they're a group that's been constructed with great care. They're young but have accrued a ton of experience -- ...

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