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DeAndre Jordan's pick-and-roll play makes Clippers dangerous on offense

The Clippers see center DeAndre Jordan as an offensive threat in a not-so-traditional manner.

They see his biggest strength as a high-flyer who rolls to the basket for dunks.

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They also see Jordan as one of the best screeners in the NBA who sets picks for shooters such as Austin Rivers, Lou Williams, Tobias Harris and Milos Teodosic.

All of them are able to get open looks from the three-point arc because Jordan sets a solid screen and then rolls to the basket.

The on-ball defender usually hesitates a split second, allowing Rivers, Harris, Teodosic and Williams to get free.

How teams defend the pick-and-roll play also means Jordan can get open to catch lob passes high at the rim for dunks.

Jordan is averaging 11.8 points, 15.0 rebounds and 1.4 assists a game this season, well above his career averages of 9.3/10.5/0.7.

"We're really hard to stop offensively when DJ does that," Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. "When he rolls and posts and seals and runs the floor, there's a reason Lou and Austin and those guys are wide open behind the three.

"Because DJ rolls, someone has to take him. Tobias and Austin and Lou are standing behind the three wide open. But it all comes from DJ. DJ doesn't get enough credit for their shots. Yet, we know why they got them."

Clippers stay in playoff hunt

The Clippers stand on the edge of the Western Conference playoffs, in as the eighth seed one day and out when in ninth place the next.

That they are still in the mix despite an injury-ravaged season is a good thing.

Doc Rivers was asked as a competitor whether he'd prefer to be three or four games ahead in the playoff race or still chasing a spot.

"I'd like to be 25 games ahead, are you kidding me?" Rivers responded. "I'm going to question your question on that one.

"No, competitive means be 25 [games] ahead. And then when you think about the playoffs and you have preparation. That's a lot of fun. But this is not, not fun. I think basketball is fun. You know that. Hell, let's keep winning and having fun."

The Clippers have another big week ahead as they continue to try to secure a playoff spot.

They will face the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday, New Orleans Pelicans on Tuesday, Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday and Orlando Magic on Saturday.

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All four games are at Staples Center.

UP NEXT

VS. BROOKLYN

When: 6 p.m. Sunday.

On the air: TV: Prime Ticket; Radio: 570, 1330.

Update: The Nets are 1-9 in their last 10 games and have the third-worst record in the Eastern Conference at 20-43. The Nets attempt the second-most three-point shots in the NBA, averaging 35.1 a game, but they are shooting only 34.7% from long range, ranking 28th in the league.

Twitter: @BA_Turner

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