The LA Clippers need to spoil the rise of Luke Doncic.
If this was a movie the LA Clippers would have no chance.
The team that many people praise as being one of the deepest, most versatile in the NBA was supposed to breeze through the first round of the playoffs with relative ease. Many analysts and players are picking them to go all the way to the NBA Finals. Sure, they are facing a good opponent with a rising superstar, quality second-fiddle, and strong supporting cast of streaky shooters, but the Clippers are built to withstand that sort of test.
But midway through their series with the Dallas Mavericks, the Clippers find themselves locked at 2-2 and facing a surging opponent lead by a seemingly otherworldly talent on the rise.
In a movie, this would be a turning point. It would be the part where the hero starts to really believe in themself and turn the tables on things on their way to victory. In a movie, the Clippers would be the favorites, the big, bad, seemingly unbeatable opponent in the way of things that the hero needs to defeat. And we all know what happens to the seemingly unbeatable opponent in a movie.
Luckily for the Clippers, life is not a movie and they have a chance to turn things around and say “not today, Luka” to the rise of the budding superstar. In the future documentary about the career of Luka Doncic, they want to make sure they’re a spoiler to the rising star. They want to be the Detroit Pistons to his Michael Jordan (I’m not saying Doncic is MJ, but you know what I’m getting at here.)
Luka Doncic is at a very special point in his basketball career. The second-year player is making a case that he’s already one of the best players in the league at a mere 21-years-old. He hasn’t yet reached the inevitable point all superstars eventually reach of over-saturation where we overly nit-pick their game or their credentials. Nobody is questioning his greatness saying “sure he can play but is he a winner?” He is almost universally loved right now, and the Clippers are in his way.
They know what they have to do.