The Los Angeles Clippers opened their season on Thursday night in a wild game against their southland rivals, the Lakers.
Any contest between these two teams is always noteworthy but Thursday’s game was even more special because it is the start of a pivotal season for the two teams.
The Lakers are attempting to get back in some sort of competitive shape and the Clippers are looking to become Western Conference champions this year.
Ty Lue says Kawhi Leonard will come off the bench in the season opener. His reasoning? “We want him to be available at the end of the game if we need him.” Lue says that Leonard was most comfortable with this lineup rotation.
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) October 21, 2022
Kawhi Leonard will be a huge part of their success.
Leonard sat out last season because of injury and rehabilitation but he’s back now and the team is more than happy about his return.
However, he didn’t return to the game as many expected.
Right before the game, head coach Ty Lue revealed that Leonard was going to come off of the bench and not be a starting player.
This was a shock considering that Leonard is one of the greatest basketball players alive – so why wouldn’t Lue and his Clippers want Leonard as part of the starting five?
“We want him to be available at the end of the game if we need him,” Lue said.
Yes, this choice took many by surprise – but it ultimately made the Clippers more competitive and should be considered again in the future.
Having Leonard as a bench player makes the Clippers almost unstoppable.
Leonard coming into the game later means that the opposing team isn’t able to rest.
No matter if the Clippers are using their starters or their bench, they always pose a serious threat from all over the court.
Leonard is one of the best NBA players on Earth and his being a bench player makes the Clippers incredible for all 48 minutes.