New Orleans Pelicans: 3 storylines to watch against the Los Angeles Clippers

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New Orleans Pelicans, Steven Adams
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New Orleans Pelicans: Slower pace is better

The Los Angeles Clippers are one of the slower teams in the NBA.

Under Ty Lue, the Clippers have become accustomed to a much more deliberate brand of basketball. They walk the ball up the court and hunt for the best shot possible, hence their improved efficiency compared to last season.

This could bode well for the New Orleans Pelicans, who have several victories against some of the slow-paced teams next to the Clippers. For instance, New Orleans has racked up wins against the Phoenix Suns, Detroit Pistons, and Boston Celtics.

The Pelicans find it easier to play opponents who give them the chance to set up their half-court defense and don’t push the ball as much. For the Clippers, this is a byproduct of having players who can score from anywhere on the floor but are very comfortable in the midrange.

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Of course, this applies to Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, but also for Lou Williams and Marcus Morris who are the Clippers’ third and fourth leading scorers.

The Pels are also a patient team, although it seems like that’s more a case of trying to prevent defensive lapses rather than maximizing the offense. This probably fits Brandon Ingram the best out of anyone on the roster, but Lonzo Ball has adjusted admirably and Zion Williamson is going to score no matter what.

The disappointing part is that Stan Van Gundy has failed to make this approach work. The Pels give up the fifth most points in the league and are terrible at defending both twos and threes. The sole thing that has improved is the turnovers, going from second worst in the NBA last year to the middle of the pack this season.