The Los Angeles Clippers are in a tight bind. They just received news yesterday that Chris Paul will need surgery on his thumb that will cost him 6-8 weeks. What makes matters worst is that the Clippers are already without the services of Blake Griffin. To add more salt to the wound is the fact the team is in the middle of a packed race for playoff seeding.
The Clippers are currently 4th in the West with a 29-14 record but the Oklahoma City Thunder, Utah Jazz, and Memphis Grizzlies are right on their tail as four games separate the bunch. What’s more staggering is that the injury happens at the worst time for the Clippers. Paul will be out possibly through the trade deadline. Griffin will be back in another week or so but a team of bigs will not get the Clippers very far. DeAndre Jordan is not the offensive player to help Griffin carry a team and Jamal Crawford is good but he’s no true PG. Austin Rivers is shaky as best when he’s given more than 30 minutes per.
With news dropping today that the Minnesota Timberwolves are actively shopping Ricky Rubio, the Clippers may have to put in a phone call to see what the asking price is for the guard. This may seem like a panic move on the Clippers part but if the Clippers cannot get any offense from their backcourt then by the time Paul does return it may be too late. Raymond Felton is still on the team but his days as a starter are over.
The Clippers need someone who will set up an offense and get to the rim. Felton is not that player and neither is Crawford. Rubio is not a perimeter threat but with Crawford and Reddick on the wings, he won’t need to be. Rubio can still dish with the best of them (7.9) but his shooting woes have continued.
Rubio’s $13.7M contract may be too rich for the Clippers to grab but at this point, they may not have a choice. The goal is to save the season by any means necessary. Paul and Griffin have missed time the last two years due to injuries and the Clippers cannot continue to take chances. Both players can leave at the end of 2017 so, a Rubio trade now may pay dividends later down the road.