Replacing Chris Paul will probably be extremely difficult for the Los Angeles Clippers.
However, since Blake Griffin decided to return to the team in free agency and center DeAndre is still under contract, Doc Rivers and company still feel as though they can compete, even after the sign-and-trade that sent Paul to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams, Sam Dekker, Montrezl Harrell, Harrun Hilliard, DeAndre Liggins, Kyle Wiltjer a protected first-round pick and cash considerations was finalized.
Sharpshooter J.J. Redick also left to join the Philadelphia 76ers in free agency.
Replacing Paul, who averaged 18.7 points, 9.9 assists, 4.4 rebounds and 2.3 steals over his 12-year career, with Beverley, who is a star on the defensive end, creates some real concern when thinking of the offensive end of the floor.
Therefore, as first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Clippers decided to reach overseas and sign Serbian star Milo Teodosic to a two-year, $12.3 million deal.
At 30 years old, Teodosic is regarded as a flashy passer, and at 6’5”, he will be among the tallest point guards in the NBA. If the name seems familiar to you, it’s probably because at the Rio Olympics, he scored 18 points and had six assists against Team USA.
Shortly after, NBA general managers voted him as the best international player in the world that wasn’t competing in the NBA.
Last season, he played his sixth season for CSKA Moscow in Russia following four seasons with Olympiakos in Greece. Averaging 16.1 points and 6.8 assists over 29 games, he apparently caught the attention of the Clippers.
This isn’t the first time that the Serb has received an NBA offer, either. Following a 26-point, nine-assist preseason domination of the Minnesota Timberwolves in 2013, the Memphis Grizzlies offered him a two-year, $5 million deal, but he chose to stay in Europe.
According to Zach Pereles of Yahoo Sports’ Ball Don’t Lie, the Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves were also interested in Teodosic’s services.
Interestingly, Teodosic and new teammate Beverley have a couple of connections. First, they played together briefly in Greece. Also, hilariously, Beverley now has to change his road hotel alias:
Note the wording there from Beverley. Despite the fact that the Serb hasn’t played a single game in the NBA, Beverley, who played with the NBA’s assist leader James Harden last season, was quick to dish out the bold compliment for his new (and former) teammate.
Here’s video evidence to support his claim:
Beverley’s respect for his new teammate extends back quite a few years. In fact, Teodosic is someone who Beverley praised all the way back in 2010:
It will be interesting to see how the starting situation shapes out, as it has been reported that Teodosic signed with the assumption that he will start.
Nonetheless, expect to see both him and his buddy Beverley on the court together quite a bit, as coach Rivers proved that he’s not afraid to put out small-ball lineups if needed.
While losing CP3 will hurt, the future just got a little more exciting for the Clippers.News Now - Sport News