The LA Clippers hoped to impress with the debut of James Harden tonight, but the exact opposite happened. Not only did the team have an incredibly embarrassing fourth quarter, Mason Plumlee was injured in the process.
During the third quarter, Julius Randle dove for a ball and collided directly with Mason Plumlee’s knee. Plumlee couldn’t put any weight on his legs and had to be carried into the locker room. He didn’t return to the game and was officially diagnosed with a knee sprain. It’s a very unfortunate injury for the Clippers, who are already missing size after trading away all of their power forwards.
Fans were expecting a spectacular James Harden debut against the New York Knicks tonight, but it was anything from spectacular. While Harden looked good in his moments, the Clippers as a whole looked awful. LA had a horrifying 22 turnovers and only had one 30-point quarter. Their offense was largely in the mud and they got absolutely pummeled in the fourth quarter. The fourth and final quarter was largely an embarrassing implosion where the team couldn’t even get shots off.
The Clippers starting lineup hasn’t had much time to practice together, and they looked like it. The starters were a -13 in the 18:29 that they shared on the floor, and looked largely lost and passive throughout all the minutes.
After four days of rest, one would have expected the Clippers to handle business against a struggling New York Knicks team. Instead, they got handled.