Chip Engelland

Western Notes: Looney, Cronin, Blazers, Clippers, Engelland

Warriors center Kevon Looney has served as a surprise iron man for the team this season, Monte Poole of NBC Sports Bay Area writes. Looney is one of six NBA players to start in every one of his team’s games, joining Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook, Mikal Bridges, Franz Wagner and Saddiq Bey.

“Loon just does his work every single day,” head coach Steve Kerr said. “He’s the ultimate pro. He understands his body. He understands what it takes to maintain his health and his conditioning, and he’s worked really hard to get to this point.

“He’s been through an awful lot in his career, as you well know, dealing with two hip surgeries and the neuropathy issue from a couple years ago.”

Much of the Warriors’ success has been attributed to Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Andrew Wiggins, but Looney has played an important role for the club. In 53 games, he’s averaged 6.3 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 21.1 minutes per contest, shooting 55% from the floor.

Here are some other notes from the Western Conference:

  • Blazers interim general manager Joe Cronin cited cap flexibility for why the team traded Norman Powell and Robert Covington to the Clippers on Friday, Ben Golliver of The Washington Post tweets. Portland acquired Eric Bledsoe, Justise Winslow, Keon Johnson and a 2025 second-round pick in the deal, ducking below the tax this season and clearing some money from the team’s books in future seasons.
  • Kevin Pelton of ESPN grades the Blazers-Clippers trade, explaining why he likes the deal more for Los Angeles than Portland. L.A. currently ranks 8th in the Western Conference at 27-27, while Portland sits at 10th with a 21-32 record. Both teams have dealt with injuries to star players this season, as Paul George and Damian Lillard have only played in 26 and 29 games, respectively. Kawhi Leonard has also remained out as he rehabs a torn ACL.
  • Spurs assistant Chip Engelland has cleared the NBA’s health and safety protocols, according to Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News (Twitter link). San Antonio now has all of its coaches back. Engelland entered protocols on January 26, the same day that assistants Becky Hammon and Darius Songaila both exited them.