Clippers Notes: George, Lue, Harden, Tax

The Clippers now hold a 3-7 record after losing their sixth straight game, including five with James Harden in the lineup. As ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk writes, Tuesday’s contest in Denver went down to the wire, but L.A. was unable to secure the victory after being up seven with six minutes remaining.

Still, star forward Paul George thinks the team is close to a breakthrough.

I thought we played great,” George said. “It’s tough, the adversity of playing against the extra three [officials]. I thought they were awful. But, [against the] defending champs, we got to play better. There’s a lot to be positive about. I’m not one for moral victories, but I thought we showed more of a sign of a team tonight that’s close to getting it over the hump.”

Here’s more on the Clippers:

  • Speaking to Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report after the loss to the Nuggets, Tyronn Lue said adjusting on the fly after acquiring Harden has been difficult. “This is my toughest challenge as a head coach, but I’m up for the task for sure,” Lue said. “The biggest thing is getting these guys to sacrifice for guys, whether that’s starting the game, finishing the game, shots, touches, who’s running pick-and-rolls, and things like that. Getting these guys to sacrifice will be the biggest challenge all season.”
  • According to Haynes, George reiterated that he’s confident the group will figure it out, despite the rocky start. “We’re all honoring this adjustment. We have to sacrifice. We understand it. Simple as that. No one is going against that. Nobody is frustrated about it,” George told Bleacher Report. “We know what we have. There’s one ball, and there’s four good motherf–kers. And we understand that and embrace it. We want to make each other better, and I don’t think one person is complaining one bit about it.”
  • Harden, who told Haynes he’s still working his way into game shape after being absent for most of Philadelphia’s training camp, is also confident the Clips will turn things around. “When we figure this out, it’s going to be scary,” Harden said. “We’re getting there. We’ll let others talk, and we’ll put the work in. It’s going to take some time, and that’s OK.”
  • Promoting Joshua Primo and signing Daniel Theis (once he clears waivers) will push the Clippers’ payroll past $200MM — L.A. will join the Warriors as the only two teams to ever exceed that figure, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks (Twitter link). L.A.’s luxury tax bill will sit at $142.3MM once Theis is officially a Clipper, Marks adds.
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