The Los Angeles Clippers have rubbed another team the wrong way with comments made to the media.
Denver Nuggets coach Michael Malone took a shot at Clippers guard Patrick Beverley on Tuesday over comments Beverley made about Nikola Jokic.
After the Clippers’ Game 3 win Monday, Beverley made a series of critical comments about Jokic influencing officials, which you can read here. That didn’t sit well with Malone, who indicated that he didn’t care much for Beverley’s opinion.
“I don’t listen to Patrick Beverley a whole lot,” Malone said Tuesdsay, via Mark Medina of USA Today. “If Kawhi Leonard was talking, maybe I might’ve listened to it. Kawhi is a great player. But all you have to do is look at the stat sheet.”
Malone added that there was a huge free throw disparity in Game 3 that favored the Clippers, and finished by saying he was “not really sure what game Patrick is talking about or looking at.”
Malone is pretty clear here. In his eyes, Beverley isn’t a great player, and his opinion is irrelevant. It’s fair to say the heat has been turned up a bit on this series.
Nikola Jokic has elevated his game in the postseason thus far, and Patrick Beverley believes the Denver Nuggets star has done that in part by putting pressure on officials.
After Jokic scored 32 points in Monday night’s loss to the Los Angeles Clippers, Beverley compared the big man’s game to Luka Doncic’s. He said Jokic does a lot of “flailing” like Doncic.
Clippers’ Patrick Beverley on Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic after Game 3 win: “He presents the same thing Luka Doncic presents: a lot of flailing. He puts a lot of pressure on the referees to make the right calls.” pic.twitter.com/KB7Hs8dTsr
Jokic has only shot 10 free throws through the first three games against the Clippers, so it’s not as if he gets every call. Still, his presence in the paint is one of the main reasons the Nuggets defeated the Utah Jazz in seven games last year. It also gives them a shot against L.A.
Jokic recently provided a great reason for why he has been so effective on offense. Beverley seems to think the officials help with that, though his comments were more of a compliment than anything.
NBA players have held tense meetings with the league and NBA Players Association this week amid their boycotts, but Los Angeles Clippers center Ivica Zubac says any talk of Patrick Beverley stepping out of line is inaccurate.
Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports published a story on Thursday night providing a behind-the-scenes look at some of what has gone on in Orlando since the shooting of Jacob Blake. At one point, Haynes says NBPA executive director Michele Roberts spoke to players about the financial ramifications of ending the season and leaving Orlando. Beverley disagreed with Roberts’ logic when she was going over numbers and interrupted her multiple times. When she asked if she could finish making her point, Beverley reportedly shot back, “No, I pay your salary.”
Sources told Haynes that NBPA president Chris Paul and other veteran players intervened and told Beverley the type of disrespect he showed Roberts will not be tolerated. Zubac claims that never happened. On Friday, Zubac shot down the report on Twitter and said “Pat never said anything like this.”
Only those who were in the meeting know what happened. If Haynes’ report was accurate, it sounds like Beverley owes Roberts an apology. If it wasn’t, Zubac shouldn’t be the only one who defends Beverley.
Patrick Beverley had a bit of fun at Damian Lillard’s expense on Saturday, and Lillard responded by talking some mess of his own.
The Portland Trail Blazers guard missed two crucial free throws in the final twenty seconds of their game against the LA Clippers in the Orlando bubble. Lillard had a chance to put the Blazers up one with the foul shots, but his misses instead sealed the loss for them in a crucial seeding contest.
Beverley, who did not play in the game, taunted Lillard from the sideline over the missed free throws, mockingly yelling, “Dame Time!”
After the game, Lillard reacted to Beverley’s antics.
“I’ve sent him home before at the end of the game,” Lillard said. “Paul George got sent home by me last year in the playoffs, so they know. The reason they’re reacting like that is because of what they expect from me, which is a sign of respect, and it just shows what I’ve done at a high clip more times than not. I’m not offended by it. I think it should just tell you how much it hurt them to go through what I’ve been through in those situations previously.”
Indeed, Lillard’s two most famous clutch shots are the series-winning threes he hit against Beverley and the Houston Rockets in the 2014 playoffs and against George and the Oklahoma City Thunder in the 2019 playoffs.
Patrick Beverley gave Damian Lillard some serious praise during a recent interview.
Beverley was a guest on “The JJ Redick Podcast” for an episode that was published on Thursday. In the interview, Redick, who plays for the New Orleans Pelicans, asked Beverley to name his toughest defensive assignment. After thinking for a bit, the LA Clippers defender gave his answer.
“I say Dame,” Beverley said, naming Lillard. “Dame is one of the reasons why I went into the weight room. I told my guys, ‘hey, I gotta get faster laterally. I don’t feel like I’m fast — I can’t keep up with the speed right now. I don’t know if I need to lose weight. I don’t know if I need to get stronger. I don’t know if I need to hire a new f—ing team. But I need to get f—ing faster. So I have you guys break that down.”
Beverley also said that all his hard work paid off in the form of one big stop last year.
“And so we worked a whole bunch and, you know, prime example, last year, iso play, game winner, and I get a stop on him. All that hard work for one play. One play!” said Beverley.
Beverley doesn’t often give praise to others, so you know the Portland Trail Blazers star really has to have impressed him for him to say that. Part of his mentality is never giving an inch. Dame should take it as a big compliment.
Patrick Beverley has heard the objections to restarting the NBA season. He has heard the arguments. He also knows that they’re ultimately going to fall on deaf ears.
Why? Beverley had a funny take on Sunday that essentially explains why the NBA is almost guaranteed to return — LeBron James, the league’s biggest star, is coming back. That means everyone else is, too.
Hoopers say what y’all want. If @KingJames said he hooping. We all hooping. Not Personal only BUSINESS #StayWoke
This is probably about right. James is the sport’s most influential player, and a lot of guys will follow his lead. Sure, that will put him at odds with one of his former teammates, but that’s not necessarily new.
“No,” replied Beverley. “I mean that with absolutely no disrespect. Not only the Lakers organization but to any organization. Everyone is preparing to win a championship, so I can’t discredit anyone. But I understand and I know the guys that’s in my locker room and the mentality they have and the urge they have to win and the sacrifices that guys took and are taking for us to win a championship this year. I know my guys inside and out, and I know their mindset. I know how far they’re gonna go until this job is done.
“Like I said, it’s no disrespect, discredit to anyone else, I just don’t know, I’m not in personal contact with anyone else in the NBA except my teammates,” the veteran continued. “From that mind point right there, I can only go with us. I can only go with us. I understand what we have, what we had before. We have two pieces in K [Kawhi Leonard] and P [Paul George], and you add Twin [Marcus Morris] and you add Reggie [Jackson] and we become a dangerous team. But that doesn’t discredit any other team who’s working hard out there also. I’m just really confident in ours, that’s all.”
Beverley and the Clippers have a right to feel confident. Before play was suspended, they had the NBA’s fourth-best record and were 4-3 against the three teams ahead of them in the standings (including 2-1 against the Lakers).
Is it hard to guard LeBron James? Patrick Beverley doesn’t think so.
The Los Angeles Clippers guard was on the wrong end of a 28-point James performance on Sunday, but he was not moved after the game. His only response to whether it was hard to guard James? “No challenge” and it’s “not hard at all.”
I really wanted to know what goes through a guard’s head when LeBron targets them in late game forward/guard pick and pop situations pic.twitter.com/qrVlHnhY9C
The 31-year-old Beverley was one of the players mentioned in the piece as being somewhat close with Leonard, so he may not necessarily speak for the entire locker room. Still, he obviously feels strongly enough about the picture that the story appeared to paint.