After missing five consecutive games during the Clippers’ recent losing streak which extended to eight after the 102-87 loss to Charlotte, guard Patrick Beverley is expected to return to the lineup Monday against the New York Knicks. The team clearly needs a jolt of some sort.
“We get Patrick back Monday night and start playing the right way, we will be all right,” said after the loss to the Hornets.
After starting the season as one of the best teams in the league in opponent turnovers per possession, the Clippers have fallen from No. 3 to No. 19. The Clippers kept it close through three quarters against Charlotte, but a 16-point fourth quarter led to the lopsided result.
While Beverley might be known as a big-time offensive weapon, it’s the lack of weapons overall for the Clippers that makes his return to consequential. Austin Rivers has been playing poorly lately, but it’s not necessarily his fault — he’s in a role that’s not meant for him. Lou Williams is more serviceable, but then the team risks losing his scoring off the bench.
Beverley’s return should allow for the rotation, at least partially, to fall back to more of a comfort zone.
“Obviously we get Pat back next game, which is going to help,” head coach Doc Rivers said. “It gets us another guard in there.”
The Clippers have won just once since a Blake Griffin buzzer beater defeated Portland (Oct. 29) to record a 4-0 start to the season.
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