New Los Angeles Clippers head coach Ty Lue has an interesting plan for his team’s biggest star, Kawhi Leonard. He plans to use him a bit differently in 2020-21 than former head coach, Doc Rivers, did.
“We have put in two or three sets from the triangle and let Kawhi play in those spaces where Kobe and Jordan played in those spots as well,” he said.
“[Leonard] loves those two players. He really respects and looks up to those guys, so we’re just trying to put him in positions [to succeed]. I was able to play with both those guys, but I also played in the triangle, so just trying to teach him that as well as teaching our team as well.”
For Lue, this is part of a broader strategy.
“I think it’s a lost art,” Lue said of the midrange game.
“I’m a firm believer in, ‘why not work on what teams are giving up?’ Every team wants to give up the midrange shot, the midrange 2s, and why not continue to work on the shots that teams are giving up.
“When you see, even in late-game situations in the fourth quarter, the midrange shots are what wins the games. Those are the shots you’re gonna get in the playoffs as well, so it’s great having Lou [Williams], Kawhi, PG, and now Luke [Kennard], who can also make that midrange shot and if you shoot it at a high clip, it’s just as good as a 3 for me.”
Will Lue’s plan ultimately guide the Clippers to their first championship in franchise history? Time will tell.