After the NBA season came to a squeaking halt almost a month ago, the LA Clippers are getting together for workouts via video calls.
Because the league shut down all the practice facilities, players have been using tailored equipment at their homes provided by the team. Up to 10 players at a time tune in to these “video workouts” led by the team’s performance staff. Coach Doc Rivers says, the guys challenge each other, that there’s a lot of trash talk and that the guys will have funny stories to tell about watching each other’s workouts when they get out.
Rivers declares the league will resume to a high level of competition because the leagues hiatus allows players like Paul George and Kawhi Leonard to train at a level they weren´t able to before, when they had to deal with injuries. If they do get back the guys won’t all have sore bodies and hopefully all be healthy. Doc Rivers figures: “If we can get back to this and guys can get their rhythm in time, that’ll be the whole key. It can be the best playoffs in the history because of that.”
He explains that during the last 10 games the team was turning into the Clippers – they had won nine of 10 games when the season came to a halt after one of Utah’s players was tested positive for the corona virus. “We were playing seamlessly through Kawhi and PG, it wasn’t forced anymore. I really thought we were about to make a crazy run down the stretch and unfortunately, bam, it stopped.”
Coaching and players are keeping in touch on a daily basis, whether that’s via phone call or video chat. Coach Rivers is trying to get his guys to understand two things: “Our goals haven’t changed and (that) we cannot use whatever happens when we come out of this as the reason we don’t win.”