Years from now, the this NBA offseason will be known simply as “The Great Warrior/Clipper Feud of 2008.”
Hoops World reported today that the Clippers are now looking at signing none other than Andris Biedrins with their glut of available cap space.
(Side note: if I’m the Clippers, my sales pitch to Biedrins is as follows: Check out all these sunny beaches! Check out all the tanning salons! And uh, oh yeah, um, you and Baron run the pick and roll OK, too. But seriously, Andris, did you see how many Mystic salons are within a two-mile radius of the Staples Center?)
It all started when the Clip Joint (I love it when people call the Clippers that! And there’s also the Clip Show, which isn’t too shabby either. For such a rotten franchise, they do have two of the best unwritten secondary team names in pro sports) got into Baron’s ear and convinced him to opt out and take their 5-year, $65 million deal.
The Warriors reacted quickly and with malice when they made it quite public that they could offer Elton Brand (an odd fit with Don Nelson) a ton of money. Whether or not the Warriors actually offered Brand $90 million, $82 million or if it was all just a big ploy from Brand’s agent David Falk, the intent was clear: make the Clippers pay dearly.
Brand made the smart decision in going to Philly on Wednesday, and the Warriors immediately went to the Clippers’ Plan B and snatched up Corey Maggette before the Clippers could say “Benoit Benjamin.” Sure, the Warriors overpaid, but they were like a bitter married person holding their cheating spouse’s credit card the day before filing for divorce (hello C-Rod!). They were going to spend that new cap space, especially if they could burn the Clippers at the same time.
Let’s face it, the Warriors and Clippers have a lot in common besides mediocre experiences relying on men named Mike Dunleavy. While the Clippers are perhaps the most cursed and ridiculed franchise in this country, over the ten seasons they’ve averaged 30 wins a year. The Warriors have averaged 31. What we have here is not a product of Baron, Elton, Corey or Andris. These are two franchises that have been beaten and battered by the Western Conference for over a decade (one playoff appearance each in those last ten years). Since they don’t have much chance of competing among the West’s elite next year either, they’ve decided to turn their frustrations toward each other. Hey, at least next year Clippers/Warriors regular season games will be interesting for the first time in a long time. And by a long time, I mean ever.