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LA Clippers look forward to new season

12-15-2011 10:25 BJT

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The shortened, but still highly anticipated upcoming NBA season is almost upon us. While the traditional powerhouses are still expected to dominate, the minnows of the league are preparing to mount a challenge. One of the up and coming teams is the Los Angeles Clippers.

The Los Angeles Clippers media day was filled with good spirits and optimism about the season ahead. The Clippers are coming off of a year in which they developed a pattern of winning late in the year and they’re hoping to build on that.

Los Angeles Clippers newly-re-signed center DeAndre Jordan, left, peeks out from
behind the backdrop, as teammates Mo Williams (25), forward Blake Griffin (32) and
guard Eric Gordon (10) prepare to pose for a group photo during NBA basketball media
day in Los Angeles Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

The Clippers have acquired a couple of star veterans they hope will help them start the season off well. All-star point guard Chauncey Billips is joining the team from the New York Knicks. Forward Caron Butler comes to the Clippers from the Dallas Mavericks after spending most of last season recovering from a knee injury.

Caron Butler, LA Clippers forward, said, "Majority of my last season after January consisted of rehabilitation but I was able to see that run first-hand being in the locker room and witnessing some of that comradery that we had. I want to bring some of that same energy and effort right over here."

Last season was the 5th straight year that the Clippers didn’t make the playoffs. They finished the year with a 32 and 50 record. The major bright spot for the team was that forward Blake Griffin was named the N-B-A Rookie of the Year.

Los Angeles Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro, center, poses with,
from left, forward Blake Griffin (32), guard Eric Gordon (10) and
forward Caron Butler (5) at NBA basketball media day in Los Angeles,
Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

The Clippers are in the same position as the rest of the N-B-A teams facing a shorter schedule. Each team will *only* play 66 games down from the normal 82 since the long lockout caused the season to start late. Most of Clippers players are young. The average age of this team is about 25 years old.

Reporter: "Coach how do you think the youth of this team is going to be advantageous in terms of handling the 66-game schedule?”

Los Angeles Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro talks to
reporters at NBA basketball media day in Los Angeles, Tuesday,
Dec. 13, 2011. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

Vinny Del Negro, LA Clippers head coach, said, "Well the depth itself. You get to a stage where some of the guys have to grow up and someguys have to grow up a little bit quicker but we have a nice mixture now some veteran guys, some guys in their prime, some younger guys.”

Blake Griffin, LA Clippers forward, said, "Fresh legs always can help but when it comes down to it when you need to win games sometimes experience takes over. So hopefully the good mix that we have between youth and experience can kind of mix together and hopefully help us pull out some games. "

The Clippers are hoping that their days of being regarded as a team with just a lot of talented players are finally over. They believe that with consistent and disciplined play they’ll end their playoff drought this season.


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Editor:Zhang Dan |Source: CNTV.CN

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