3 players the Clippers need to be eyeing this offseason

Los Angeles Clippers v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four
Los Angeles Clippers v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four / Tim Warner/GettyImages
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Do even the most die-hard Clippers fans expect the organization to ace this crucial offseason?

About a month after getting knocked out of the playoffs by Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks, the sting of defeat has yet to fade. Perhaps it's because Kawhi Leonard evaded the injury bug for months, only to succumb to another knee injury in the postseason. I'm sure some around the team think that if Leonard were healthy, Los Angeles would be the Western Conference representative in the Finals instead of Dallas. 

Is that fair? It's impossible to say, but it's another harsh reminder that this group can't get it done when it matters most. "Running it back" would be basketball malpractice, but the Intuit Dome won't fill itself, and if nothing else, the club features plenty of players with name-value fit for Tinseltown. 

It will be challenging to retool on the fly since the franchise embarked on a lavish spending spree over the last few years with little return. The depth of the financial hardship will determine the status of James Harden and Paul George. Despite reports suggesting management wants those guys back, after months of failing to reach an agreement, it seems that proposition is getting increasingly unlikely. Letting those guys walk to re-set the cap and inject this roster with fresh faces would be an exciting approach. 

Even in a weaker free-agent class, three players jump out to me as ideal pieces who can help usher in the next era of Clippers basketball. 

3 ideal free agents the Clippers must target

Kelly Oubre Jr.
Philadelphia 76ers v Brooklyn Nets / Dustin Satloff/GettyImages

1. Wing - Kelly Oubre Jr.

For years, it looked like Kelly Oubre Jr. was an uber-talented scorer who offered little else of value on the court. His shooting has blossomed in recent years after being one of many to struggle in the Washington Wizards system. He is a legit three-level threat, with a decent handle and a smooth lefty stroke.

The wrap on him for a while was that he was a ball-stopper who lacked defensive intensity. 6'7 wings who score 20 points per game should never last on the open market until September. It goes to show just how badly potential suitors valued his intangibles. When he signed with the Philadelphia 76ers right before the season, it marked his fifth different team since 2018 and drew little attention.

Oubre was Philadelphia's third-best player and showed the ability to score in bunches within the confines of a structured offense. He finally used his massive frame to his advantage defensively, becoming a pesky on-ball anchor. Whether it was embodying the city's toughness or channeling a newfound grit, it doesn't matter because he proved he belongs in a championship rotation. For the right price, Oubre would be a perfect player for Tyron Lue to help elevate further.