Terance Mann became the unexpected savior of the Los Angeles Clippers, showing up when the team needed an extra piece to defeat the Utah Jazz in the second round of the playoffs. He went off with 39 points in Game 6, earning the Clippers' fans' respect forever.
His game has evolved in the last two seasons but this year, it reached new levels. Tyronn Lue has played a big role in that, according to his mother.
Daynia La-Force, Terance's mother, was extremely happy when he saw all the love her son received at Staples Center after his impressive 39-point performance.
Via The Athletic:
Well, I was brought to tears at the end of the game, when I saw 19,000 people at the Staples Center giving my son a standing ovation. I was really brought to tears, because I know how hard he’s worked to put himself in a position to be an impact player for the Clippers. I know the blood, sweat and tears that went into getting him to have that confidence to shoot the ball the way he did.
Moreover, she credited Lue for the evolution of her son. This year, the coach has been essential for Mann, unlocking his potential and taking him to different levels. La-Force, who works as an assistant coach for the WNBA's Atlanta Dream, explained that Terance's relationship with Lue is very different from the one he had with Doc Rivers.
But I’ll tell you one thing, you know, because I’m a basketball coach and he’s grown up in a coaching household. He understands the impact a coach has on a player. He understands the importance of a player-coach relationship. He thinks those things are essential to his success. So last year, I don’t think he had a great player-coach relationship with Doc. I don’t think he got that confidence that he needed from Doc. And it’s the complete opposite from Ty Lue. You know, Ty Lue is a player’s coach. Ty Lue pours confidence in his players, from No. 1 all the way to No. 12. So I think Ty Lue just telling Terance, “You need to shoot that shot,” that’s all Terance really needed. He needs that coach to tell him what he needs, what is needed. And he’s going to run through a brick wall for any coach that gives him that coaching.
And it’s because he grew up in a coaching household. He doesn’t see basketball as an individual sport, he sees it as a team sport, led by a leader who gets the team to buy into that vision. And without that connection, individually, Terance isn’t a great basketball player. But with coaching, with leadership, with confidence, with all the intangibles of the mental part of the game, he’s a great all-star in the league. And that is the difference between his rookie year and his second year. Part of his game is the love of the coach, is being coached. Part of his game is getting that confidence, the confidence from the coach, and knowing exactly what the coach wants from him. And he will take it, run with it and run through a brick wall for any coach that gives him that sort of nurturing.
Lue has made an impact not only on Mann but the rest of the Clippers. The team has finally made the Western Conference Finals after 50 years and that's because of the coach, his adjustments and how he talks to his players.
They have had two incredible games in the WCF, but little details have prevented them from getting that first win. It's time to show that they're not done and make a statement now that they're headed back home.
Mann will try to help his team get those W's against the dangerous Phoenix Suns trying to make history with the Clips again.