With the trade of Doc Rivers from the Boston Celtics to the Los Angeles Clippers I believe it makes the Clippers the team to beat in L.A. Yes I said it, the TEAM to beat in Los Angeles!!! The only thing that is left to make me 100% right is the resigning of Chris Paul but if he stays in L.A. then I know they are the better team in Los Angeles. Last year with Vinny Del Negro the Clippers managed to win 56 games and the Pacific Division by 9 full games, but for the 2nd year in a row they were knocked out of the playoffs early! They were eliminated in 6 games against the Grizzles this year after winning the first two and the year before that they made it out of the first round but were swept in the second round by the Spurs. The two biggest things Rivers will change with the Clippers is their defensive intensity and their effort on the boards. The Clippers finished 18 out of 30 in rebounding last year but was the 4th ranked scoring defense in the league. The main reason I think that the Clippers are now the team to beat though is that they have a lot less questions then the Lakers have. The Lakers have to worry about the health of Kobe Bryant, if Dwight Howard will be back and if Mike D’Antoni is really the right guy. The Clippers also swept the Lakers last year winning all four games by an average of 13 points per game but I really think that Rivers is the key component! The Celtics had no right to even make the playoffs this year between losing Ray Allen, having Rondo get injured and of course the age of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett but Rivers being the great coach he is got the most out of his team and though they were knocked out in the first round had an impressive season with all things considered. Though there are a lot of different off season moves to come for both teams I truly believe Doc Rivers alone makes the Clippers the team to beat in L.A.

By: David Hastings

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