During last night's first timeout, the LA Clippers played a heartwarming tribute video for Reggie Jackson, who returned to downtown Los Angeles for the first time since being traded away in February 2023.
As the home crowd lunged up and shared claps in honor of the once-fan favorite Clipper's return, Jackson made a heart with his hands and raised it high in the air, reciprocating LA's warm welcome.
And from the opening tip, it was Jackson's very hands that proved too much for the Clippers to handle.
Two former Clippers sealed the deal for Denver
Against a Nuggets team without Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and Aaron Gordon, the star-studded Clippers struggled to contain the visitors' fourth-quarter explosion, losing 113-104. Jackson finished the contest with a game-high 35 points on 15-of-19 shooting, while DeAndre Jordan, another former Clipper, stuffed the stat sheets with 21 points, 13 rebounds and five assists. This was just the third game Jordan played this season.
There's a lot to be said about this disconcerting loss. The Clippers, with as much talent they have, shouldn't have broken down in the fourth quarter. They also shouldn't have lost at home, especially against a Nuggets team without their three best players.
But, more importantly, it prompts concern about Lawrence Frank and the Clippers' approach to constructing a championship-contending roster.