Blake Griffin may get the highlight clips, but Chris Paul deserves the love for his refusal to let the Clippers fall to the Pacers last night. After LA allowed a 17-point lead to slip to the Pacers, including a furious 13-0 run in a three-minute barrage late in the fourth quarter, CP3 stopped the bleeding and scored the final eight points to ensure a 99-91 victory.
Vincent Thomas wrote about Paul before the All-Star break.
CP’s numbers (16/9/4/3) aren’t gaudy like 2007-2009 CP numbers (21/11/5/3). What he continues to do better than anyone in the league, however, is run and lead a team. When he says the team is still trying to find its identity, he means that he’s still trying to teach the team how to be more like him. As athletic and fun as this squad may be, if you take CP off the roster (especially with Billups and Hill in suits), it becomes one of the lowest IQ’d, least-disciplined, most rudderless outfits in the league; a squad capable of 2011-2012 Washington Wizard-level shenanigans. Plus, there is not a player on that squad, other than CP, that can consistently create a shot for a teammate; and, other than CP and Crawford, no player on that team can consistently create a “GOOD” shot for themselves.