“That Just Can’t Happen”: Former LA Clippers Coach Details Ty Lue’s Immediate Priorities for Next NBA Season

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The LA Clippers have a lot to prove next season. Entering the 2019-20 season, they were the prohibitive favorites in the NBA. Their off-season moves to bring Kawhi Leonard and Paul George to their franchise was a championship statement. With the depth in their roster and Doc Rivers as head coach, they were one of the best teams in the NBA.

But the Clippers collapsed shambolically in the playoffs. They blew a 3-1 lead to the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Semifinals. The Clippers again failed to reach the Western Conference Finals, and the Lakers took advantage to win the NBA Championship.

As a result, Doc Rivers parted ways with the Clippers and Ty Lue became head coach after being an assistant. And now, the Clippers will look to run it back, and do what they failed to the previous season.

Los Angeles Clippers superstar Kawhi Leonard
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 20: L.A. Clippers Forward Kawhi Leonard celebrates donation of One Million backpacks from Baby2Baby, Kawhi Leonard and the L.A. Clippers to students across Los Angeles at 107th Street Elementary on August 20, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for Baby2Baby)

What Ty Lou needs to do to get LA Clippers a Chip

Former Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro spoke to Alex Kennedy of BasketballNews. Del Negro seemed optimistic of Ty Lue’s chances as head coach given his resume, and his time as an assistant. He said:

“Well, he’s been a head coach, you know, with Cleveland, he’s had, you know, won a championship with LeBron and that roster. So having familiarity of the players, the systems, the issues that the team had last year, you know, I always tell you know, when I do coaches clinics and things I say, you know, you’re sometimes you’re going to lose as a coach, that’s just part of the competition.”

Del Negro said that Lue’s main goal was to address the manner of defeat for the Clippers. He said, “But how you lose does matter. And the way the Clippers lost last year mattered, how they looked on the court, how they competed at the end of those games, how they gave up big leads consistently, and that’s really what Ty Lou has got to figure out. I mean, that that just can’t happen.” 

Del Negro on what Lue needs to focus on

The former Clippers coach believes that the challenge for Lue is not a lack of resources, but how to put them together and said, “And he knows that they have an incredibly talented roster, you know, they have a committed ownership group, obviously, you know. So the resources are not the problem there. It’s, it’s how they’re going to get everybody to mesh together in terms of to compete at a very high level.”

Del Negro said that the expectations should be high given the talent at Lue’s disposal and claimed, “But when you have Kawhi Leonard, Paul George and Lou Williams and the depth of that roster, high expectations for that organization which there should be and when you have high expectations and those aren’t fulfilled, you know, coaches get fired. That’s just part of the business and part of the overall culture of the NBA.”

Del Negro was the head coach for the LA Clippers from 2010 to 2013. Doc Rivers replaced him after Del Negro fell out with Chris Paul.

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