Golden State Warriors: Comparisons To Other Contenders

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Los Angeles Clippers

May 5, 2014; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin (32) and Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul (3) react to play in action against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the fourth quarter in game one of the second round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Projected Starting Lineup

PG: Chris Paul

SG: JJ Redick

SF: Matt Barnes

PF: Blake Griffin

C: DeAndre Jordan

Key Bench Players

Jamal Crawford, Spencer Hawes, Jared Dudley and Reggie Bullock.

Head Coach

Doc Rivers, second year in Los Angeles.


The Los Angeles Clippers knocked the Warriors out of the playoffs after a game seven victory. Golden State was without center Bogut for the entire series and his replacement, Jermaine O’Neal, played limited minutes as well. The Clippers had problems of their own, though as they had to deal with the whole Donald Sterling fiasco.

Nonetheless, the Clippers earned the victory.

Both in the Pacific Division, this matchup has grown into a rivalry even though Coach Jackson would always reassure the media that it was not. A big reason the Clippers advanced and the Warriors did not was Darren Collison–the greatest backup point guard in the league backing up the greatest point guard in the league.

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  • He made a handful of clutch baskets to put Los Angeles over the top. He, although still in the Pacific Division, left the Clippers to join the Sacramento Kings. The Clippers are still without a backup point guard. Unless they want the same problems as the Warriors a year ago, they better find Collison’s replacement quickly.

    The Clippers starting lineup features two of the NBA’s top five players in Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, and two of the NBA’s best defensive players in Paul and DeAndre Jordan. It’s safe to say they’re pretty talented. They also have the reigning Sixth Man of the Year in Jamal Crawford.

    Besides that, the Clippers signed Spencer Hawes–the big man who can shoot threes–to backup Jordan.

    I’ll give the Clippers the edge when considering the starters simply because there’s no way to argue with Paul and Griffin. The bench, however, is a different story. Although Jamal Crawford was last season’s best bench player, the Clippers have little other help. Golden State’s bench is deeper and more talented.

    Doc Rivers is widely considered one of the NBA’s best coaches. I disagree. I, for one, believe that Rivers has inherited a lot of talent in Los Angeles. There’s enough talent there to get out of the second round of the playoffs.

    Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

    The Clippers stumbled versus Oklahoma City, allowing Kevin Durant and company to stage a roaring comeback that ultimately gave Rivers a lot of bad press.

    Similarly, in Boston, Rivers’ success was the product of massive loads of talent. Does anyone remember what the Celtics were like before Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen came flocking to Boston? That’s right, they were horrible. They won 24 games and were the second-to-worst team in the Eastern Conference.

    Sure, Rivers has mostly had success as a coach, but is it fair to say that wherever he’s been, talent has been there too?

    Rivers obviously has the edge over Kerr at the moment, but I firmly believe Rivers is not as good of a coach as he’s made out to be.

    As it stands, this matchup is a draw, but if the Sterling issue hangs around for a while longer, give the Warriors the edge. In fact, Rivers has thought about quitting if Sterling is still the owner of the Clippers.