Clippers players reportedly asked out of Game 7 for breather
The Los Angeles Clippers saw their season end in incredibly disappointing fashion on Tuesday night, and there have been multiple indications that conditioning became a huge issue for the team.
After taking a 3-1 series lead over the Denver Nuggets, L.A. completely collapsed and lost three straight. The Clippers took a two-point lead into halftime in Game 7 before seemingly giving up. They scored just 15 points in the fourth quarter. According to Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated, multiple Clippers players asked out of the game in the fourth quarter because they needed a breather.
Several Clippers were so fatigued during Game 7 against Denver that they struggled to play stints longer than three minutes and asked out of the game for a breather in the fourth quarter, sources told @TheUndefeated.
— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpears) September 16, 2020
Doc Rivers told reporters after the game that his players were visibly exhausted during Game 7, which is not typical for them. The coach believes having multiple players who were in and out of the bubble became problematic.
“I was never comfortable. Never was,” Rivers said, per Spears. “Conditioning wise we had guys who couldn’t play minutes.”
The only thing more frustrating for Clippers fans than the meltdown is the way the players have handled it. Multiple Clippers players said they believe chemistry was an issue for the team. Then we saw Paul George, who shot just 4-for-16 in Game 7, make some troubling remarks about the Clippers’ mentality.
No team should be more motivated heading into next season, but it’s fair to question if that will be the case in L.A.