On paper, the 2019-20 Los Angeles Clippers were the closest thing to a superteam since the infamous KD-led Golden State Warriors squad. On the court, however, they rarely ever played like it.
A mix of injuries, load management, and ego compromised the team chemistry, and even by the start of the Orlando bubble playoffs, the Clippers were a squad without a real identity. As questions continue to surface as to just what happened to that team, some more details have since emerged, shedding some more light on why things failed to work out.
Clippers culture 😬
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) December 2, 2020
According to The Athletic, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George were granted an unprecedented level of star treatment, which included being assigned their own personal security guards and trainers, power over the team’s practice schedule, and the ability to pick and chose which games they played.
Preferential treatment is a common practice in the league, and it’s widely accepted that the top players, the ones making max money, usually get a certain degree of control over things that other players don’t.
The power that was given to PG and Kawhi surpassed those norms. They had ultimate control, and it sometimes came at the expense of their teammates, who hinted at problems all throughout the season.
With a new regime in the coaching office now, things are likely to change. We will see soon enough how much of a difference it makes.