Through 31 games into the year, one constant issue for the LA Clippers has been the backup center position. While this is one of many reasons the team has been struggling, head coach Tyronn Lue is unable to play small ball against every opponent. As a result, the Clippers are losing opportunities on the glass.
Furthermore, Lue has been overplaying his starting center, Ivica Zubac. This has led the seven-foot big man to face left knee discomfort. Had the Clippers added a competent backup center, there is a good chance Zubac would be off the injury report. Not to mention he is, without a doubt, the team’s most reliable player.
That said, according to Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report, Charlotte Hornets big man Mason Plumlee may be seen as a trade target for the LA Clippers. This is not surprising, as rumors surround several players in Charlotte after their atrocious start to the season.
If the Clippers’ front office were to make this trade, the most they would have to give up would be a second-round pick. This is likely because Plumlee is not only 32 years old, but there is only so much he can contribute to a championship-contending team. Therefore the LA Clippers should hang up the phone if the asking price is too high.
Plumlee is one of the best options on the market for the LA Clippers.
Trading for an offensive threat like Mason Plumlee would be the missing spark the LA Clippers desperately need. In the minutes Zubac is off the floor, the rotation is without a paint presence, which can be the primary cause of a scoring drought.
Moreover, Plumlee’s impact would instantly solve this problem. So far this season, Plumlee is averaging a near-double-double with 9.6 points and 9.6 rebounds. Additionally, he is posting 4.1 assists per game while shooting 59.0% from the field.
However, in most cases, the stat sheet only tells part of the story. Plumlee’s skill-set checks off each box on the eye test. He brings a level of scoring that the Clippers’ bench needs, plus a much-needed effort on the glass and a play-making component. Each of these attributes would significantly boost Lue’s game plan in the right direction.
What’s more, Plumlee is currently playing his ninth season in the NBA. His veteran experience could be very useful in developing the Clippers’ younger centers, Moussa Diabaté and Moses Brown.
Nonetheless, each of these reasons adds to why trading for a center like Plumlee would be one of the best options for the LA Clippers. Plumlee’s value will be placed under the spotlight when the playoffs come around, proving to the world how dominant he can be. The front office should quickly call the Hornets before the timer runs out.