Hi, my name is Broderick Turner, and welcome back to the Los Angeles Times'
The Clippers refuse to think they are delusional just because they still believe the playoffs are in reach.
Oh, they understand that injuries have ravaged them this season and made the task of reaching their goal arduous. But the Clippers are willing to accept the challenge before them, no matter how difficult it may be.
Besides, they have been to the playoffs the last six consecutive seasons and they don't want that to stop just because they can't stay healthy.
"Yeah, we believe we can make the playoffs, because if we don't have no belief, then we shouldn't be playing,"
Even at 14-19, the Clippers don't view that as the end of their season.
Yes, they are below .500, but they can see the teams ahead of them in the Western Conference standings and are sure they can get one of the top eight postseason spots.
The Clippers are three games behind the eighth-seeded
"Everything will fall in place," Jordan said. "I'm still playing hard. We're still playing hard. The season is still early."
Indeed, it's still December, giving the Clippers three-plus months to make a move.
But they can't wait any longer.
"This is a time for us to get back into that playoff picture," Austin Rivers said. "We can't sleep on nobody because we need every win to get back into the picture, right? So, I don't care if their record is below .500 or above .500. A game is a game. We need every single one that we can get."
The Clippers are five games below .500, so they can't take any game or team for granted. They have 23 games until the All-Star break and the schedule is somewhat favorable for them. Twelve of the teams they face during this period are below .500.
"That don't mean [anything] because we've got a losing record and we're a good team," Jordan said, smiling. "I think it's important that we get on a winning streak, especially with us being home so much, because the
The Clippers' cause will be helped when
And they can take comfort in knowing that they have just two back-to-back sets over the next 23 games.
"We've got plenty of games left in the season," Rivers said. "But you can't keep using that, because if you are using that, the games run out and the season is over with. So, we've got to start capitalizing now and get as many wins as possible and take every team serious."
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(All times Pacific)
Friday at Lakers, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday vs. Charlotte, 4 p.m.
Tuesday vs. Memphis, 7:30 p.m., NBA-TV
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