Paul Pierce says Clippers’ first practices are as good as any he’s experienced


Sep 25, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul (3), forward Blake Griffin (32), center DeAndre Jordan (6) and head coach Doc Rivers during media day at the Clipper Training Facility in Playa Vista. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Paul Pierce has been in the NBA for 17 years, so when he’s impressed with what he sees, it’s a big statement in comparison to the amount of teams and players he’s been around through such a long and prolific career. From his 15 years with the Boston Celtics to the last two seasons playing for the Brooklyn Nets and the Washington Wizards, Pierce has been around a lot of talent. But when it comes to the Los Angeles Clippers’ first training camp practices ahead of the 2015-16 season, Pierce says they are as good as any he’s been a part of.

That’s high praise for a revamped Clippers squad featuring so many new players and a completely new bench. With Lance Stephenson, Josh Smith, Wesley Johnson, Cole Aldrich and Paul Pierce stepping into key roles, there’s a lot of adjusting for Doc Rivers and the Clippers’ existing core of talent.

Yet, despite the expected need to adapt and grow accustomed to one another, the general consensus throughout Clippers training camp so far is that they’re gelling extremely well already. Which is probably the reason why the bench were able to beat the starters in a scrimmage on the first day of training camp on Saturday September, 26.

Now, as has been reported by Rowan Kavner of, Pierce has commented that his new team are playing well together and finding their offensive rhythm already:

"“The first couple practices have really been good. I like what we’re doing. These probably are as good of a first two practices as I’ve been around. Usually guys are moving too fast, lot of turnovers, but we look pretty sharp for the most part I think, especially being that we have so many new guys.”"

After 17 years worth of training camps and late summer sessions, it’s incredibly exciting for Clippers fans everywhere to think that the last two days have been as good as any practices that Paul Pierce has been around. It’s even more encouraging when considering the amount of new players that the Clippers have added.

As the veteran forward said, passes and offensive movements are expected to be out of sync. Players aren’t necessarily going to be connected to their teammates when it comes to timing passes on cuts to the basket effectively and running different plays. Yet, that doesn’t seem to be much of an issue for the Clippers right now at this early stage of their 2015-16 campaign.

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Pierce has been around some extremely talented teams in the past too, so his comments shouldn’t be taken lightly. During his Celtics days, he lined up with star players such as Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo to form the “Big 4” that won a championship in 2008. Even in Washington last season, Pierce was part of a Wizards squad featuring the backcourt duo of John Wall and Bradley Beal (even if he dealt with injuries) with the powerful frontcourt combination of Nene Hilario and Marcin Gortat.

That Wizards team still weren’t able to win more than 46 games in the Weak Eastern Conference, though, and were eliminated in six games against the Atlanta Hawks in the second round; despite the efforts and clutch shots of Paul Pierce.

So, with every sign in training camp so far surrounding the Clippers with a great sense of promise, from their second unit performance to their improving competitiveness, there are plenty of reasons to get excited for the upcoming season.

Next: Who should Clippers start? Paul Pierce vs. Wesley Johnson