Takeaways from the LA Clippers’ preseason loss to the Trail Blazers

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 8: DeAndre Jordan /
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HONOLULU, HI – OCTOBER 4: Wesley Johnson
HONOLULU, HI – OCTOBER 4: Wesley Johnson /

WesJo ready for an increased role

After coming off the bench in the Clippers’ two games in Hawaii, Wesley Johnson started at the small forward spot for LA in place of the injured Gallinari. Johnson played well in his 23 minutes of game action, scoring eight points on 75 percent shooting, including going two for two from three. In his 54 minutes of game time in the preseason, Johnson has looked like the player that Clippers fans expected from the forward when he joined the team a few seasons ago. Johnson has looked much more confident and comfortable shooting the ball and has shot five of six from three in the Clippers’ three preseason games. After shooting a miserable 24.7 percent from three last season, an improvement to his shot behind the arc could lead to Johnson receiving an increase in minutes this year.

“They’ve asked me to do a lot, especially on the defensive end,” Johnson said after the Clippers’ open practice on Tuesday, “So I know that leads to easy points. Once we get stops we can get out and push the ball on our breaks so I definitely want to make that establishment on the defensive end.” In the team’s three preseason games, Johnson has come into games before and received more minutes than his competitor for the Clips’ back up small forward position, Sam Dekker. What we will likely see is both players on the floor at the same time when the bench is in, with WesJo at small forward and Dekker playing more of a stretch-four position.