Clippers Notes: Kennard, Batum, Zubac, Ibaka

Luke Kennard and Nicolas Batum, two important offseason additions for the Clippers, haven’t played a regular season NBA game in nearly a year, writes Mirjam Swanson of The Orange County Register. Both players are trying to use the shortened preseason to get ready for opening night, which is just six days away.

The Pistons shut down Kennard last December 21 because of knee tendinitis. He had been hoping to return March 14, but the hiatus kept that from happening. Batum appeared in just 22 games last season, limited by injuries and the Hornets’ preference to give minutes to their younger players.

“The first (preseason) game was kind of weird,” Batum said. “I just wanted to go out there and just be back on the court and just play basketball and do some stuff and be sure I don’t do some crazy mistake. That’s really my goal the first two games, to be back on the court and get through the motion and get my rhythm and the feel for the court.”

There’s more Clippers news to pass along:

  • Ivica Zubac is adjusting to his new role as backup center, notes Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times. Zubac is expected to play similar minutes as in the past, but he will be on the court with a different set of teammates. “Zu specifically, he just has to get better with his hands,” said Lou Williams, the leader of the team’s second unit. “That was a conversation we spoke to. I’m a willing passer and he knows that. And so for him to be successful and get a lot of easy looks, we’re gonna have to get better and get on the same page with that. Other than that, I look forward to growing with him.”
  • Kennard and Serge Ibaka are both better fits for the Clippers than the players they replaced, contends John Hollinger of The Athletic. He sees Kennard, who can help run the offense, as a more complete player than Landry Shamet and notes that Ibaka’s ability to space the floor makes him more versatile than Montrezl Harrell. Hollinger opines that Paul George won’t be able to live up to his new four-year, $176MM contract, but thinks it still makes sense for the team, since the focus is on competing for a title in the next two seasons.
  • Reggie Jackson and assistant coach Chauncey Billups both returned to the team after being excused from Sunday’s game due to health and safety protocols, tweets Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN.
newest oldest

20 thoughts on “Clippers Notes: Kennard, Batum, Zubac, Ibaka

  1. harden (mvp),wall, and wood

    Batum has always been an excellent defender, far better than Montrezl Harrell.

  2. KnickerbockerAl

    Batum and Harrell play different positions. Makes no sense. Clippers should be trying to get Hill.

  3. SheltonMatthews

    Lou Williams saying he’s a willing passer is one of the funniest things I’ve heard this week.

  4. Simmons>Russ

    Kennard and Batum are great fits for the Clippers but I still think they aren’t a better team than they were last year.

    PG got exposed as a flake, Kawhi will feel down on confidence, they have a new coach and coaching staff, Lou Will is nearing retirement years and Harrell who went from nearly 6th man of the year isn’t there anymore.

    Think this team just has a couple issues in the locker room, issues from last season and just isn’t in the right mind set right now. Whereas the Lakers just won and will be high on confidence and just had a great offseason.
    Nuggets are high on confidence after upsetting the Clippers, Bucks have gotten better, Sixers will be high on confidence, and so on.

    I’d say the clippers went from being the first/second best team to being about the sixth

    • With the Lakers, LeBron is a big-time leader in thought and action. There ain’t no Misbehavin in the Laker locker room.. or in the Jimmy Butler locker room or in the Draymond Green locker room. No individuals in those locker rooms, it’s team first with those kind of leaders.

      The Clippers? Quiet Kawhi they say leads by example. Leads on the floor. When it comes time to bark in the locker room he won’t do it. He’ll take a couple days off. He has a reputation from the San Antonio Fiasco. “My thigh hurts. Nope can’t go right now. Sitting this one out. Sitting this month out.”

      We’ll see how it goes. Sort of touch-and-go time for the Clippers right now. Lot of money- will there be results?

  5. Tatsumaki

    George paul definitely won’t live up to that contract. Dudes a bonafide scrub.

    • Cap & Crunch

      I hate Paul George more than almost any other player in the NBA…
      Now saying that, I will say, his (new) contract has positive trade value today so your post couldnt be more wrong if you tryed

  6. swarley

    Little_Dunker_45 you seem to attack people with most of your comments. If you disagree maybe try to start a conversation instead.

  7. phillyballers

    Wouldn’t Dedmon or Taj make sense as veteran additions here, also on min deals?

  8. Noel1982

    Luka and the mavs finish the job they nearly completed last year in knocking the clippers out of the playoffs in rd 1 as 7 vs 2 rematch !

Leave a Reply