Free Clippers Agency: John Wall, Andre Drummond and Other Under-the-Radar Targets to Watch

year 2022 NBA The draft is Thursday, and when it comes to free agents, what happens with Los Angeles Clippers And their attempts to keep to themselves were the priority. This is particularly the case this year, as the Clippers have no first-round lottery pick or pick and will start the draft with a second-round pick. Clippers also have a mostly full roster, which means if they can keep their free agents, there might be room for only one veteran contributor from outside the team.

We’ll know by next week what the team’s choice looks like Ivica Zubak Player’s choice Nicholas Batum Decide themselves, as the teams will officially begin negotiating with the free agents at the end of next week.

Before the draft begins reshaping the rosters across the league, let’s take a look at some of the under-the-radar options the Clippers should consider, one at each position. I will also include positional arrangement of Athletic John Hollinger With every goal.

forward force: Otto Porter Jr.

It was interesting when the Warriors visited the Clippers for the first game after the 2021 All-Star break. Golden State coach Steve Kerr mentioned that the Warriors wanted to sign with Batum after Charlotte Hornets He bought his contract in the 2020 season. Batum continued his career renaissance with the Clippers in 2020-21, then signed a two-year contract with a player option to return for the 2021-22 season. The Warriors, on the other hand, missed the 2021 qualifiers after losing two Play-In games, then the often injured Porter fell to the bottom once Batum signed the Clippers in 2021.

Porter is handsomely signed for the newly crowned champion Warriors. Porter was a solid reserve forward who was asked to do some offensive tackle (seven-year low of 8.2 points per game, career low 15.0 use rate), but the third pick from the 2013 NBA Draft outside of Georgetown effectively spaced out the floor (1.3 3 seconds). ) per game, 37.0 percent), bounced aggressively (5.7 per game) and was active defensively (1.1 steals). Dunks are one of my favorite indicators of health and blast, and Porter has made 11 this season in 63 games after just eight games in the previous three seasons combined in Washington, Chicago and Orlando.

The Clippers favor the return of Batum; He also prefers Batum to return. So, it seems that adding a veteran force forward would be a moot point. But just in case things break down somewhere, or if there is a deal involved Marcus Morris Sr.Porter could be an emergency option and would certainly be a good fit for Clippers on both ends of the earth.

Shoot the guard: Dillon Wright

Wright is a Los Angeles native, attended Leuzinger High School in Lawndale, California, and is a former classmate of the current Clippers. Norman Powell And the Kohi Leonard. The Hawks were Wright’s sixth team in four years, playing a five-year low of 18.9 minutes per game while serving as the All-Star behind combo guard. Tra Young and wings like DeAndre HunterAnd the Kevin Huerter And the Bogdan Bogdanovic.

Hollinger has Wright as the starting goalkeeper, but he plays 6-5 and has played the ball enough to fit any position on the ocean. Wright is an incredibly quiet goalscorer who somehow attempted 6.7 field goals and 1.6 free throws per 36 minutes last season. He can shoot basketball, making 37.9% of his 3s and 85.7% of his free throws. Wright has active defensive hands while finishing the transition well, the latter being a major problem for the 2021-22 Clippers. Wright has always been keen in basketball, which indicates his lack of aggressiveness but also reflects how he values ​​The Rock.

Maybe Clippers coach Tyronne Lou should tell Wright to shoot the basketball over and over. Wright turns 30 despite being a 2015 first-round pick and had a quiet year in Atlanta. He could be available to a team like the Clippers, who have two free-agent wings kofi prince (restricted) and Rodney Hood (Unbound). Wright can play Pick-and-Roll well enough to be added to the cadre of Game Industry Wings already on the roster, with more point guard experience than anyone except current novices Reggie Jackson.

small progress: TJ Warren

The danger to Warren is clear: He has played only four games since the 2020 restart ended in Florida. Warren underwent surgery in January 2021 to repair a stress fracture in his left foot, and although he has been in practice this season, the Pacers closed him in March.

Warren spent the rest of last season preparing for the 2022-23 season at his home in North Carolina, and the 2014 North Carolina State Lottery pick will no doubt have to get a deal that sort of proves it. Hollinger has Warren as a strong striker, but Warren spent his first season with the Pacers starting as the junior striker. Dumantas Sabonis In power forward and Miles Turner in the center. He certainly has the size to play power forward, but it’s his skill as an effective 3-point target scorer and great mid-range game that makes him intriguing.

As mentioned above with Wright and Porter, the suite site for the Clippers menu is quite full. But that can always change depending on what happens in free agency, and it’s unclear what kind of workload Warren can meet. Warren can be the type who doesn’t play every day with the Clippers or take a heavy load of minutes when he plays out on the court. He’s got sort of juice on the ball as a scorer and off-ball skill as a breaker to go long enough as a thrower to be a unique teammaker in the Lue variety.

center: Andre Drummond

The names are getting bigger, right? Drummond was the ninth pick in the 2012 Connecticut draft by Detroit Pistons. His first coach in the NBA was none other than Lawrence Frank, who is now the Clippers’ head of basketball operations. The Pistons-to-Clippers pipeline is extensive, and Drummond has played with Jackson, Morris and Luke Kennard.

Drummond led the NBA in rebounds four times and was an All-Star in 2016 and 2018, but as evidenced by the fact that he’s played for five teams in the past three seasons, his worth now isn’t that of an elite position. Drummond has been trading in the middle of two out of the past three years, and the Clippers may have been interested in him after Cleveland Cavaliers Bought it in 2020-21; Drummond went to start Los Angeles Lakers Instead before signing the minimum deal to back up Joel Embiid With the Philadelphia 76ers in the 2021 season.

Drummond doesn’t block many shots, but It is a decent edge protectoralthough not at the same level as an unrestricted free proxy Isaiah Hartenstein or zip It can be cooked in isolation, but Drummond has always had active hands, which allows him to disrupt his pick-and-roll meals regularly. Offensively, Drummond can be adventurous despite his large size. He doesn’t finish a lot of the extra offensive rebounds he inhales, flips the ball too much to be an option, and has always struggled to shoot well. But Drummond can still jump, and his pass isn’t so bad that it’s completely radioactive with the ball in his hands off the paint.

The center position is the one most likely to see a turnover from last season for the Clippers. That process has already begun when Serge Ibaka It was traded in February. Zubac’s center partners have had vastly different skill sets in each of the previous three seasons, including Hartenstein’s pass, Ibaka’s shot and the 2020 sixth man. Montrezel HarelInternal scoring for . If nothing else, Drummond would be the best playmaker, and the Clippers would definitely welcome it.

guard point: John Wall

That’s as loud as it is here! John Wall, Best Pick from the same 2010 NBA Draft I witnessed Paul George go x. Five All-Star, 2015 All-Defense (2nd Team) and 2017 All-NBA (3rd Team) with Washington WizardsWall saw his career sidetracked by a combination of injuries and whatever you want to call the 2021-22 season as the Houston Rockets kept him on the inactive roster throughout the entire campaign.

Wall last played on April 23, 2021, when he finished with 27 points and 13 assists against the Clippers in a close upset. Overall, Wall has played only 113 regular season games since the 2017 postseason. But the 2020-21 season has been a comeback for him. He competed defensively despite his lowest rebounds (3.2) and steals (1.1), averaging 20.6 points, 5.3 free throw attempts (74.9 percent), 6.9 assists, and 2.0 3s. The downside to Wall’s attack was that he shot 40.4 percent of his low career path, made just 31.7 percent of 3, and earned 3.5 turnovers to continue his low nursing career.

This brings us to the reason for including Wall here, especially when I suggested he was a superior player in it Keri Irving Doesn’t make sense to clippers Wall expected to sign up for the $47 million player option next season. Simply put, Wall would be a takeover candidate for the Clippers, not a player arriving via trade. If Wall were to come to the Clippers at a discount, he would be playing for the most talented team he’s been on. In addition to his relationship with George, Wall is represented by Rich Paul, who also represents Brandon Boston Jr. and now Lue. The question will be whether he will start or be willing to come off the bench.

(Top photo: Carmen Mandato/POOL PHOTOS-USA Today)