Blogtable: The Clips Without CP3

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes to weigh in on the three most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.


Week 14: Has it clicked for the Lakers? | A healthy star who’s struggling | Clips without CP3


What’s the prognosis for the Clips without a fully healthy Chris Paul?

Steve Aschburner: Prognosis for the second half? Maybe the Clippers can hang onto their Pacific Division crown to secure a top seed. But if Paul still were bothered by his knee come the playoffs, I think they’d be in trouble. Eric Bledsoe is solid, but Paul’s too important — distributing, defending, closing — to think the Clippers could play at or near their potential through even a first-round series. You know the saying about playoff defenses taking away your first and second options? L.A.’s foes would be able to focus on its second and third options without Paul as a full factor.

Fran Blinebury: About the same as the prognosis for the pole business without firemen and strippers.

Chris Paul, by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

Chris Paul, by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

Jeff Caplan: Prognosis Negative. The Clippers won’t go very far without a full strength CP3. Just like last season when they were swept out of in the West semis by the Spurs when Paul and Blake Griffin were banged up. The Clips are extraordinarily deep and talented, but without Paul to handle the ball, to exert control over the offense when the game slows down and execution is key, L.A. won’t go far.

Scott Howard-Cooper: The championship hopes are over. The aspirations for a Western Conference title are over. Yes, the Clippers are deep, and, yes, they would have Chauncey Billups (eventually) and Eric Bledsoe to take over at point guard. But Paul is one of the special talents in the league, a threat as a passer or shooter, a defender, a leader. There is still a long time before the question becomes real. But for the sake of conversation, the Clippers would not be able to overcome CP3 laboring in the playoffs.

John Schuhmann: If he’s playing and not 100 percent, then they’re still a pretty good team, because that, at least, keeps their great second unit intact. Their depth is most effective when their starters are playing and their defense is at its best when Eric Bledsoe is out there with Matt Barnes, Lamar Odom and Ronny Turiaf. But they’re obviously not nearly on the same level as the Spurs or Thunder if Paul’s not at his best. He’s the engine of their top-five offense.

Sekou Smith: Well, if they don’t have him at full strength for the remainder of the season, that’s a game changer. As deep as they are, Paul is the heart and soul of that team. Eric Bledsoe is a fantastic young talent and great things could be on his horizon in the coming years. But the Clippers need an experienced and steady hand at the controls down the stretch and into the playoffs. Take a look at Boston and see how quickly a team’s fortunes change when they don’t have their All-Star point guard in the mix. Better yet, just go back and look at the difference in the Bulls without Derrick Rose. The Clippers would be in a similar situation without Paul healthy for the duration of this season. With CP3 they have a chance to compete for a spot in the Western Conference finals and ultimately a championship. Without him … they’ll be fishing long before then.

17 Comments

  1. Kira says:

    CP3 is the best!!!!

  2. The kid says:

    Cp3

  3. The kid says:

    See, all that “best bench” propaganda was garbage, the clippers r simply cp3, Blake n a bunch of bums

  4. bigwes95 says:

    Without Paul, the Clippers are over with. They can barely win games without him and kind of show how Griffin relies on Paul to get him going. Griffin can basically only dunk still and shoot some when he’s basically wide open. But the thing is, Griffin isn’t the leader of that team and CP3 is the only reason they’re winning right now. What happened when he went down? they lost 4 straight games and blew a 9 point lead in less than 2 minutes on Sunday. Paul really is everything for them and it just proves why he’s teh best point gaurd in the league. He’s only around 5’10” and controls everything in a game and makes probably one of the biggest impacts of any player in the NBA, except for a certain few like LBJ, Durant, Howard(when he actaully wants to play), and maybe one more, but that would be it. He basically single handed turned around the Clippers and the Hornets. Sure Griffin helps, but he couldn’t win very much with just him, unlike the people i just mentioned (except Durant, he’s always had help).

  5. Megan says:

    The T-wolves Play the Clippers tonight!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :) :0

  6. KC says:

    To be fair, it really speaks to the depth of that Chicago team to be where they are at this point in the season without Derrick Rose. I wasn’t expecting it, just like I wasn’t expecting Boozer to make such a ridiculous comeback. One thing that I did sort of expect was for Noah to evolve into a defensive player of the year candidate, now that Howard is slowed by his bum back.

  7. HMH says:

    If he’s been out this long, I’m pretty sure he has more than just a right knee bruise…..

  8. killuabest says:

    cp3 come to lakers baby…

  9. kevin nicholls INDIANAPOLIS says:

    Paul is a leader on and off the court, he can make plays for him self and others with out him griffin is going to have to be dominant but if there going to go deep in the playoffs then there going to need paul, you just can’t replace a player like paul, there deep and going to need a total team effort to replace paul.

  10. Denzo says:

    Sekou, what are you talking about?

    Look at the Bulls without Rose? And what? See a team that traded basically their whole 2nd unit, and still somehow dominated the knicks at home after handing the Heat one their few losses at home also. Thats a joke.

    Seriously why type hype. Bulls are doing great, and are playing better than ever even without rose.

    Rose is his own beast and now the bulls are playing serious ball, look at Boozer and Butler, Noah and Deng.. Even Nate and Kirk – they are balling hard right now and dont forget Bellineli too.. Sorry but they are playing sick for what is essentially a new team.TAJ.

    • bullsfan0218 says:

      I agree that the bulls are playing great right now and they’re still a playoff team without Rose, but to say they’re playing better than ever even without Rose? thats a bit of a stretch they were definitely playing better the last couple of years with Rose in the lineup

  11. Kings#4 says:

    Without CP3 it is a first round exit or early 2nd round. With him they are among the 5 best teams in the league, OKC, Spurs, Heat and maybe Knicks, and have a shot at the title.

  12. Kamote says:

    Though they would have Billups as a leader when he gets healthy, Paul is still the reason why LAC is in the playoffs conversation. They would need him 100% to compete and go deep in the post-season. Anything less than that would just have them come up short this year.

  13. slider821 says:

    I haven’t been following the Clippers, what is CP3s official diagnosis? Is this article about not being healthy for the playoffs 4 months away just speculation or did he suffer an injury that will take that long to recover?

  14. sirsparhawk says:

    Problem with bledsoe is he is far too eager to prove his worth. He makes silly mistakes instead of playing smart. They wont go far without paul. And if they dont win, I dont see paul staying.

    • Lakers says:

      Chris Paul wont go anywhere yo. He’s staying with the Clips even if they dont win. The Lakers might have Dwight, but the Clips has Griffin whos still improving. Coming from NO Hornets, the Clips is a big improvement already. He doesnt dream to go to any larger market, not that the Clips is not in a large market already…He’s satisfied where he is. So take a chill pill everybody

    • genoa says:

      He won’t leave because the team lost without him, he’d leave if the team was still terrible WITH him.