After being a liability for the Clippers on offense in the first two games, he was booted from the starting lineup. In Game 5, his playing time was reduced to just 11 seconds. In Games 6 and 7, he did not play at all.
Reggie Jackson and Terance Mann really shined at times during Beverley’s absence. If it ain’t broke, should Ty Lue fix it? He may not want to entertain Pat Bev minutes considering the team performed better without him in the series, and that’s understandable.
However, Patrick Beverley can absolutely bounce back in the Western Conference Semifinals.
Defensively, Beverley struggled to guard Luka Doncic. It was clear that Doncic had too much size on Beverley, and it created a bad matchup for him. I wouldn’t expect those bad matchups to continue to appear, however.
There’s a reason that Pat Bev is a three-time All-Defensive Team selection. Those bad matchups don’t happen very often. And if we’re being honest, there aren’t many players in the NBA who match up well against Doncic.
Beverley is 6’1,” and Doncic is 6’7.” That size difference won’t exist for Beverley vs. the Utah Jazz.
If Beverley plays, he’ll be in line to defend the true guards on Utah’s team. Utah’s G/F Joe Ingles is 6’8,” and their G/F Miye Oni is 6’5,” but he likely wouldn’t be guarding them anyway. Again, if he’ll play, he’ll guard the more traditional backcourt players.
Out of all those, none are over 6’4.” Pat Bev should be able to handle those types of matchups.
In fact, their two primary guards, Mike Conley and Donovan Mitchell, are both the same height as Pat Bev. Conley’s a little banged up right now, so he may not play, but if he does, Bev should be able to handle that matchup.
Offensively, Pat Bev was solid against the Jazz in the regular season.
In the first game he played vs. the Jazz this year, he hit two of five threes. Not to mention he had a couple blocks on defense, proving that he can match up well vs. the Jazz. His +/- was +21 in that game.
In the next two games he played against the Jazz, he shot 80% from the field, and hit 4 of 6 three-pointers. Not only did he shine on defense with two total steals and three total blocks, but he was efficient on offense.
He was efficient on offense all season vs. the Jazz. He won’t be an offensive non-factor out there in the second round, if he gets his chance. He played fine defensively vs. the Jazz, and matches up well against what they work with.
Listen, Reggie Jackson and Terance Mann had their moments in this series. If they’re going to take Beverley’s minutes and play the way they did, then maybe Lue just shouldn’t bother getting Beverley back in the mix.
I think he at least needs to consider it, however, due to his recent success vs. the Jazz, and how he matches up against what they’ll be throwing at him. Regardless, the Clips have options in this series, and that’s a great thing.