Another coaching spot has been filled in the NBA. On October 15th 2020, the Los Angeles Clippers announced that their next head coach will be none other than Ty Lue. Lue signed a five year deal on Thursday. Ty Lue, who was the assistant coach, got the promotion after Doc Rivers (who became the new head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers) announced that he would be parting ways with the Clippers. The Clippers are coming off a dominant but disappointing 2019-2020 season, as they were able to get the two seed in the Western Conference but saw their season come to an abrupt end in the Western Conference semi finals against the Denver Nuggets.
It looked like the Western Conference Finals was set to be the battle of LA. The Lakers were sitting and waiting to see who their opponent would be, and they would end up watching the Clippers blow a 3-1 lead. This wasn’t the first time a Doc Rivers team blew a 3-1 lead. Doc Rivers sadly for him has a history of this happening to him as this was the third time this has happened. In 2003, Rivers’ Orlando Magic blew a 3-1 lead to the Detroit Pistons and in 2015, the Clippers blew a 3-1 lead to the Houston Rockets. With this now being the second time Rivers had done this with the Clippers, it seemed like it was time for him to move on.
Ty Lue now takes over a team that is full of talent, something that he should be used to. Back in 2016, Ty Lue did the impossible and coached the Cleveland Cavaliers back from a 3-1 deficit against the Golden State Warriors who had set the record that season for the most wins in NBA history during the regular season. That Cavaliers team had Lebron James, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Love on it. They were the big three of the NBA and the only team that could compete with the Golden State Warriors. The Clippers team that will be coached by Lue, has Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, Lou Williams and Patrick Beverley on it. Ty Lue will provide a new voice on the team that players will be able to get on board with, and maybe, just maybe he can get the Clippers over that hill they’ve been trying to cross for years now and reach the NBA Western Conference Finals.
With a lot of uncertainty in the NBA, there is a lot of certainty in Los Angeles. Both the Lakers and Clippers, won’t be going anywhere, and the battle of LA next season will once again be a star studded showdown. Ty Lue has the coaching ability to get the Clippers to the Western Conference Finals, it’s only a question of can the Clippers finally end their team curse of never making it there. With Lue in the drivers seat, the future still remains bright for the Clippers.
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-Matt Burnett (mattthew_jordan)