It was just a fifteen months ago, December of 2011, that the LA Clippers agreed to a 4 year, 43 million dollar contract with center DeAndre Jordan. Jordan had, in the 2010-11 season become the starting center for the Clippers, and had shown signs that he was fully prepared to embrace the role for the foreseeable future. When, a few days after Jordan signed the contract, the Clippers included former All Star center Chris Kaman in the deal that brought Chris Paul to Los Angeles, Jordan's future seemed set. The Clippers drafted Jordan as the 35th pick (2nd round) in the 2008 draft after a single, underwhelming season at Texas AM where he averaged 20 minutes and around 8 points. Jordan was raw for the college game. But the pro scouts loved his size, agility, and athleticism. There were NBA draft boards, who, even late in the process, had Jordan as a potential lottery, even a top-ten pick. In his first two seasons in the NBA, Jordan averaged around fifteen minutes, 5 points and 5 rebounds, playing behind Kaman. But "DJ" was learning slowly. While he made a few spectacular plays, leaping to swat blocked shots, or violently jamming lob passes, he also failed at other skills. He had no offensive moves under the basket, his footwork was terrible, he seemed to travel whenever he had an offensive touch. On defense he got caught jumping on even the slightest feint from an opposing player. His foul-shooting was terrible. He was, as he was in college, very very raw.
The DeAndre Dilemma
Clips Nation | Mar 15