Los Angeles Clippers: 15 players who defined Lob City

Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images
Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images /
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Willie Green, Los Angeles Clippers
Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images /

player. 77. . Shooting guard. 2012-14. Willie Green. 12

The “Lob City” Clippers were set at three positions throughout the entirety of the era, but were continually rotating through options at the 2 and 3. For three seasons, part of the answer at shooting guard was Willie Green, a 12-year NBA veteran who appeared in 127 games for the squad.

Green was never as reliable as the Clippers wanted, shooting a scorching 42.8 percent from distance in his first season with the team, yet a pedestrian 33.9 percent the next season. Green never averaged more than 6.3 points in a season for the Clippers, and scored in double figures just 24 times over 127 games — and never more than 15 points in a game.

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In 2012-13 Green was yanked around by coach Vinny Del Negro, who favored the broken-down Chauncey Billups over Green.

When Billups came back from injury in time for the 2013 postseason, Del Negro played him over Green, and Billups was a strong negative throughout the series loss.

One of the many what-ifs of the “Lob City” era was whether the Clippers would have won the series playing Green over Billups.

If so, a healthy Clippers core could have faced the Oklahoma City Thunder without the injured Russell Westbrook. They would have been heavy favorites to move on to the Western Conference Finals — a career-changing moment for both Chris Paul and Blake Griffin.

In the end, Green is merely a rotational footnote for the Clippers, a solid veteran who filled his role and did little else. There is something to be said for players who don’t need the ball to play well, and Green fit that to a ‘T’ in Los Angeles. To open up the court for alley oops, someone has to be spotting up in the corner.