LA Clippers’ Lawrence Frank on Lunchtime with Roggin and Rodney
The LA Clippers’ DeAndre Jordan will be a free agent this summer. The team re-signing him raises some questions.
It’s almost Halloween and the NBA season starts next week. I’m focused on next summer though. The LA Clippers re-signing DeAndre Jordan scares me.
I won’t sit here and argue that DeAndre Jordan isn’t worth a max contract. He is. The 2nd round pick has developed into THE premiere defensive big man and one of the best roll men in the league. His athleticism and durability are in a category all to themselves. DJ has increased his points per game nearly every season and was nominated to his first All-Star game last season. There are a lot of positives for DJ, but I just can’t commit to the idea.
After this season, DJ will be just months away from turning 30. He likely still won’t be able to shoot more than a layup. The Clippers possibly will be slightly re-tooling after a first round exit. (Maybe a second round one, provided things break their way.) The team will have a few free agents they’ll have to make decisions on, most notably Lou Williams, Montrezl Harrell and Willie Reed. Does it really make complete sense to give a max contract to a 30 year old center who doesn’t fit the current mold of the NBA and is heavily dependent on his athleticism?
Don’t get me wrong; DJ is great and losing him would be an extremely tough pill to swallow. Losing him for nothing in return would be even harder. But, does DJ really make this team THAT much better? If the Clippers aren’t going full rebuild, how do you expect them to rise in the conference when all the money is tied up into two big men? It’s a weird predicament for the team and for me as a fan.
I don’t have a solution on what to do with DJ. Obviously, if things aren’t going well this season, you could trade him midseason. What do you trade him for that really moves the needle though? I don’t have an answer. If you let him walk, who do you bring in to replace him? Once again, I have no answer.
Honestly, I want the LA Clippers to re-sign DeAndre, but the uncertainty of the future freaks me out. Let’s just enjoy this season getting underway and worry about free agency when the time comes.