Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Opposing View - 12/5 vs. L.A. Clippers

All season long, Sonics Beat will be consulting an expert on the opposing team as part our gameday preview. Today, we turn to Clipperblog's Kevin Arnovitz, who follows the Clippers and the rest of the NBA with the keen eye of an analyst and incisive writing. Kevin also answered our five questions before the first meeting between these teams this season.

For more on the Clippers, check out ClipsNation's breakdown and's Pregame Report.

What has been the key to Chris Kaman's outstanding play this season?
[1] Chris, as Elton Brand did during Summer '05, got in shape. He's more agile and more confident. [2] He's improved in recognizing and passing out of the double team.

How has the plethora of injuries affected the Clippers?
Inordinately. As if Elton Brand and Shaun Livingston weren't enough, Corey Maggette, Cuttino Mobley, Sam Cassell, and Al Thornton have all missed time. It's starting to take its toll.

What can Mike Dunleavy do to get the team going?
Duleavy had done a nice job finding opportunities for Kaman in the post and mismatches for the wing players, but guys are still standing around on the weak side. The Clippers need to do a better job of at least approximating a motion offense.

How is Al Thornton's development coming?
Slow. His decision-making needs some work and I'd like to see him take his defenders off the dribble rather than rely on his inconsistent jumper. He still gets lost on defensive rotations.

What's one thing we don't know but should about the Clippers?
It's been two weeks since the Clippers have had 5-on-5 contact drills because they're only eight deep in practice.