Clippers blew a 3-1 lead against Nuggets, kicked out of Playoffs

NBA playoff bubble

LA Clippers blew a 3-1 series lead against the Denver Nuggets and got sent home packing from the NBA playoff bubble.

“We did have championship expectations. We had the talent to do it,” Lou Williams said. “I don’t think we had the chemistry to do it and it showed.”

Playing for his third team in three years, Kawhi Leonard followed a load management program before the pandemic, rarely playing back-to-back games because of his left knee. Paul “Playoff P” George was nowhere to be seen, only showcasing his talent and brilliance when it didn’t matter most.

“Some of that came back and haunted us,” coach Doc Rivers said. “But once you get to the playoffs, throw that all out the window and you’ve got to perform. You’ve got to perform better. You’ve got to execute better. You’ve got to trust better. You’ve got to play better as a team.”

It didn’t happen, especially in Game 7. Leonard scored 14 points on 6 of 22 shooting; George scored 10 points on 4 of 16 shooting. The Clippers had just 33 points in the second half, and they didn’t make a field goal in the fourth quarter until 4:58 was left in the game. George sees no need to tear up the roster.

“We like what we got,” he said. “The more we can be together, the better we’ll be. It’s year one.”

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