Clippers re-sign veteran forward Hedo Turkoglu

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Hedo Turkoglu

Hedo Turkoglu/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

 

The Clippers have re-signed forward Hedo Turkoglu, the team announced, without providing terms of the deal.

“We are happy to welcome Hedo back to the Clippers,” coach Doc Rivers said. “Hedo is a versatile, veteran presence who contributed to the championship culture we are building in Los Angeles.”

Turkoglu last season appeared in 38 games for the Clippers. He averaged 3.0 points and 2.3 rebounds while averaging 10.3 minutes.

Turkoglu, 35, is 6-foot-10. He has a career scoring average of 11.5.

 

 

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Clippers to hold five-day training camp at Nevada Las Vegas

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Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

 

Chris Paul and the Clippers will make their training-camp headquarters for the 2014-15 season at University of Nevada Las Vegas, the team announced Monday.

The five-day camp will take place Sept. 30-Oct. 4 and will  include two-a-day practices the first four days with a single practice on Oct. 4.

“Getting away for training camp offers our team a unique opportunity to bond and focus solely on basketball as we prepare for the season,” Clippers head coach Doc Rivers said. “UNLV has first-class facilities and we are excited about starting the season in Las Vegas.”

The Clippers will play an eight-game exhibition schedule with the first game slated for Oct. 7 against the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center.

The regular season begins Oct. 30 when the Clippers play host to Oklahoma City.

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Carlos Delfino, Miroslav Raduljica waived three days after acquired

The Clippers on Friday announced they have waived Carlos Delfino and Miroslav Raduljica just three days after acquiring them in a trade that sent Jared Dudley and a protected first-round draft pick for 2017 to the Milwaukee Bucks, who also gave the Clippers a 2015 second-round draft choice.

Friday’s move was seen as one to give the Clippers salary-cap and roster flexibility, according to a story on ESPN.com. Delfino and Raduljica were waived via the stretch provision that will free up $3.5 million in order to sign others to veteran’s minimum contracts, ESPN.com reported.

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Doc Rivers signs five-year contract extension

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Clippers sign Doc Rivers to contract extension

Doc Rivers (left) and Steve Ballmer/Staff photo by David Crane

 

The Clippers on Wednesday announced that Doc Rivers, head coach and president of basketball operations, has signed a five-year contract extension through the 2018-19 season.

“This is an important day for this organization,” Clippers owner Steve Ballmer said. “I am excited to work with Doc for a long time as we build a championship culture that will deliver results both on and off the court.
“Not only is Doc one of the best coaches and executives in the game, but he continually embodies the hard-core, committed and resilient character and winning culture that the Clippers represent. It was one of my top priorities to ensure that he was firmly in place as the long-term leader of this team.”

Rivers, who in 2013-14 led the Clippers to a franchise-record 57 victories in his first season at the helm, has been impressed with the energy brought by Ballmer, who recently purchased the team from Shelly Sterling after her husband Donald lost control of the team following his highly publicized racist comments.

“Steve has shown a clear and determined desire to make the Clippers one of the most elite, first-class and championship organizations in all of professional sports,” Rivers said. “We know we have work to do to get there, but I am motivated by the challenge and thankful for the opportunity to stand together with Steve as we continue to move toward our goal of winning an NBA title.”

Rivers is entering his 16th season as a head coach, having previously held that position with the Orlando Magic and Boston Celtics. Rivers, 52, is one of three active coaches – Gregg Popovich (Spurs) and Flip Saunders (Timberwolves) with at least 600 victories. Rivers has 644.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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Clippers trade Jared Dudley to Bucks for Delfino, Raduljica

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Jared Dudley

Jared Dudley/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

The Clippers on Tuesday traded small forward Jared Dudley to the Milwaukee Bucks for guard/forward Carlos Delfino, center Miroslav Raduljica and a 2015 second-round draft pick. Milwaukee also gets a protected 2017 first-round draft pick from the Clippers
Delfino, 31, of Argentina, averaged 10.6 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 2012-13 for the Houston Rockets. He signed with Milwaukee in that off-season but missed all of 2013-14 after having surgery on his right foot.

An eight-year veteran, Delfino has a career scoring average of 8.1 points. He’s also averaged 3.6 rebounds and 1.7 assists.

Raduljica, out of Serbia, is 7-foot-1. As a rookie last season he averaged 3.8 points and 2.3 rebounds.

Dudley, a seven-year veteran, played just one season for the Clippers. He averaged 6.9 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.4 assists and 23.4 minutes.
“Jared is a great teammate, I thank him for all his hard work on and off the floor on our behalf,” said Doc Rivers, Clippers coach and president of basketball operations. “Jared is a true professional and we wish him all the best in Milwaukee.”

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Doc Rivers has no issue with Shelly Sterling the fan being courtside

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News Clippers owner Steve Ballmer passionately addresses fans at the Clippers fan festival on Monday at Staples Center. (Photo by David Crane, Staff Photographer)

 

Don’t be surprised if what was negotiated in the Steve Ballmer purchase of the Clippers isn’t met with open arms by Clippers fans in attendance at Staples Center this season. The $2 billion Ballmer spent is what it is. If that’s what he wanted to pay, we have no problem with that. But Shelly Sterling, who did broker the deal with Ballmer, also gets all this, according to the Associated Press:

- 10 tickets in Sections 101 or 111 for all Clippers games in Los Angeles.

- 2 courtside tickets for all Clippers games in Los Angeles.

- 6 parking spots in Lot C for each game

- 12 VIP passes including access to Lexus Club, Arena Club, or Chairman’s Lounge and media room or equivalent, for each Staples Game.

- 3 championship rings following any Clippers title

- Titles of “Owner Emeritus” and “Clipper’s Number 1 Fan” for the rest of her life.

Doc Rivers, coach and president of basketball operations, was asked at Monday’s post-fan festival news conference at Staples Center what he thinks of Shelly Sterling sitting courtside at home games.
“Shelly, I look at her now as, number one, what I’ve heard, this deal doesn’t get done; I think we all understand that,” he said. “You can say what you want about Shelley, but without her, this deal does not get done. I think we have to understand that. The second part is she wants to be a fan. She’s no longer the owner. But she wants to be a fan. I’m fine with that. What’s wrong with being a fan?”

Ballmer was able to agree to those perks partly because there was no one to tell him he couldn’t.

“I did this deal by myself and I’m happy I did,” he said. “I think it required a little bit of flexibility and maneuvering. Kind of a little easier to dance and move a little bit when you’re by yourself as opposed to with others.”

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Five attractive matchups to eye for upcoming season

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Jamal Crawford

Jamal Crawford/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

The Clippers figure to be involved in many terrific games this upcoming season. Here are five in particular to look for:

BIG GAMES
Oct. 30 – vs. Oklahoma City at Staples Center – The Thunder eliminated the Clippers in six games in last season’s Western Conference semifinals. A Game 5 comeback by OKC on its home court – partly because the atypical less-than-stellar play down the stretch by Chris Paul – makes this early matchup a gem.

Oct. 31 – at Lakers at Staples Center – Just because the Lakers aren’t looked upon as a championship contender doesn’t mean this game isn’t a big deal. As the Clippers continue to progress, so does the rivalry. Don’t think the Clippers don’t remember being upset by the Lakers in the 2013-14 opener.

Nov. 10 – vs. San Antonio at Staples Center – Going against the defending NBA champions is always going to be a marquee event. With the Spurs having played for the title the past two years – they lost to Miami the previous season – this game could tell the Clippers a lot about themselves.

Dec. 25 – vs. Golden State at Staples Center – With the Clippers having eliminated the Warriors in a hotly contested first-round, seven-game playoff series this past season, this has become a bit of a California rivalry. It should make for a terrific Christmas Day show for fans and players alike.

Jan. 16 – vs. Cleveland at Staples Center – With LeBron James back in Cleveland, the Cavaliers have been tabbed by several outlets as favorites to win their first NBA title. If Cleveland gets Kevin Love as expected, that would make this game even more tantalizing.

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Eight-game exhibition schedule announced with one in Las Vegas

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Chris Paul

Chris Paul/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

 

The Clippers on Friday announced their eight-game exhibition schedule. It goes like this:

Oct. 7 vs. Golden State at Staples Center, 7:30 p.m.; Oct. 12 vs. Portland at Moda Center, 6 p.m.; Oct. 13 vs. Utah at Energy Solutions Arena, 6 p.m.; Oct. 17 vs. Utah at Staples Center, 7:30 p.m.; Oct. 18 vs. Denver at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, 7:30 p.m.; Oct. 21 vs. Golden State at Oracle Arena, 7:30 p.m.; Oct. 22 vs. Phoenix at Staples Center, 7:30 p.m.;  Oct. 24 vs. Portland at Staples Center, 7:30 p.m.

 

 

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Report: Blake Griffin was advised to let small fracture in back heal

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Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

Remember last week when we reported that Blake Griffin removed himself from Team USA’s national team that was to compete in the FIBA World Cup? At the time, Griffin said he wanted to focus on the upcoming season with the Clippers.

Well, ESPN.com – citing sources – on Monday reported that Griffin was actually advised by doctors to avoid international competition during the summer so he can give a small fracture in his back more time to heal ahead of the 2014-15 NBA campaign.

 

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Blake Griffin pulls himself off Team USA to concentrate on upcoming season

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Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

Power forward Blake Griffin on Thursday announced he is pulling himself off Team USA and will not play with the national team this summer. He was one of 19 players selected to the roster; the USA World Cup team will be chosen from that roster.

“I appreciate the invitation to play for Team USA this summer,” Griffin said. “It is a special opportunity any time you have a chance to represent your country, and I was honored to be included. However, right now I want to focus and dedicate 100 percent of my energy on improving and preparing for the upcoming season with the Clippers.”

 

 

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