We’ve looked into the Los Angeles Clippers first month of the season. A brutal first month spills into a seven
game road trip for the Clippers starting December 4th. This seven game stretch in ten days will test the Clippers’ stamina and durability. If all goes well the Clippers could end up with five or six wins, or possibly a sweep. The trip to the east begins in Atlanta and continues onto Memphis, Cleveland, Philly, Boston, Brooklyn, and finishes in Washington D.C.
I see the Clippers having no problems with Atlanta, but Memphis might be the hiccup. The Grizzlies destroyed the Clippers in last year’s playoffs. The key to Memphis’ 4 straight wins were offensive rebounding, which lead to second chance points. LA gave up 52 offensive rebounds in the final four games of the series, compared to only twelve total in the first two games, which the Clippers won. The key this year will be Blake Griffin’s ability to be physical with Zach Randolph. I see Griffin becoming tougher, especially defensively, under new coach Doc Rivers.
The Clippers will likely sweep through Cleveland, Philly, and Boston. The Sixers and Celtics are in rebuilding(tank) mode and I do not think the new look Cavs have the firepower off the bench to hang with the Clips. The second possible hiccup in this trip resides in Brooklyn, as the new look Nets are all in on this season. I think the Clippers drop this game as it is their 6th game in eight days they will be weary from the travel.
They finish out this road trip with a matchup against the Wizards, one which they lost in the Verizon Center last season(without Chris Paul and Blake Griffin). The Clippers will look to finish this stretch away from home very strong with a win here. When it’s all said and done, the Clippers will emerge from this trip (6-1) and carry that momentum into the rest of the month.
The Clippers should target a (12-4) record this month, which will be impressive in a month where more then half the games are on the road, but this Clippers team can and will do it under the leadership of Chris Paul. CP3 is the key to the Clippers success in the month of December and will be called upon to motivate the troops if they begin to slow and tire. His leadership will be full display this month, and I think he leads the Clippers to a successful month of December.