How a Clippers trade with Spurs could add point-of-attack defender

Tyronn Lue LA Clippers (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Tyronn Lue LA Clippers (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /
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LA Clippers
Tre Jones, San Antonio Spurs. Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images /

How does this trade help the Clippers?

Brandon Boston Jr. has played 154 minutes this season and has been largely unspectacular; the Clippers don’t have the minutes nor the time to give him a lot of run, and whether he develops into a useable wing may not be a project the Clippers want to oversee as they chase a championship.

The project the Clippers do need to oversee is how to overcome the dynamic guard talent in the Western Conference. Stephen Curry, Ja Morant, Jamal Murray, De’Aaron Fox, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Damian Lillard, and Chris Paul all play point guard in the Western Conference; sometimes the length of Reggie Jackson will be the right defensive matchup, but other times an on-ball terrier like Tre Jones will be the better choice.

In college at Duke, Jones’ defense turned games as he completely blanketed opposing ball-handlers and forced them to get off the ball. This leaves players setting up the offense who aren’t as comfortable or slows down fastbreak opportunities. Jones is gifted at doing just that without tallying an exorbitant number of fouls, and he has fast hands to swipe for steals as well.

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Jones isn’t some diamond in the rough who will suddenly blossom into a starter, but for a team this deep, the Clippers need to ensure they have players with differing skill sets to deploy when the time is right. For a point guard rotation that has struggled for much of the season, bolstering the depth and giving Ty Lue a new weapon makes a lot of sense, especially for such a low cost.